Sunday, 3 June 2012

Moving Mountains

Sunday 3rd June 2012
Rain.
Spuds, Muck and more Muck
Today I moved not one, not two, but three mountains! I had arranged to go over to our friends and collect their bagged-up horse manure, but when I opened up the garage to hook up the trailer, I remembered that it was still half full with pig potatoes which needed loading into sacks and taking down to the pig pens. Sue and I got stuck in and it wasn't too long before half a ton of spuds were bagged up, apart from a carpeting of potato eyes on the floor of the trailer. 
The goose-barrow really earned it's keep today. I can fairly easily move 250kg on the barrow, so a couple of trips and everything was in the right place.

We then headed off to collect the 60 or so plastic bags of horse manure. Weighing in at between 5 and 8kg each, and more when wet, this was another job for the goose barrow when we returned. There was already a load of manure bags sitting by the heaps waiting to be unloaded. So that was over a hundred bags of muck to be split open and heaped up, or to put it another way, well over half a ton. By lunchtime the job was finished and so, just about, was I.
Like a marathon runner, I was pleased that it drizzled most of the day, though I must have looked pretty bedraggled by the end of it. 

But that was only two mountains moved, and the third towered over the first two, for Gerald's old stable still needed mucking out. I reckoned about 40 large wheelbarrows worth all needed digging out, wheeling down the land and unloading at the other end. Fortunately my muscles got a second wind and for a few hours I felt like Popeye. 

An admirable hobby
By early evening I welcomed the chance to pause and admire the agility of a hobby which cut through the air. Amazingly this falcon preys on swifts and swallows, particularly on migration and in late summer when there are plenty of young, inexperienced birds to hunt. Our small colony of breeding swallows attracts these falcons occasionally and the swallows always let me know of their presence as the adults fly up towards the hobby, twittering madly. I have only once seen a hobby actually take a bird in flight. It is more usual to see them catching their other favourite foodstuff over reedbeds, where they swoop in search of dragonflies which they catch and dismember in flight. Anyway, today's bird shot low through ahead of the rain and disappeared over the trees towards the Main Drain.

After that pause I pushed myself hard to get the job done and was feeling decidedly weary by the time the sun was plummeting toward the horizon.
That last barrowful was a joy to unload. A very, very good day's work done.


My muscles will be aching in the morning though, so more gentle jobs will be in order for tomorrow.

 

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