Saturday, 13 December 2008

Hay action

Justin and Emily, our friends from 'up the hill' were expecting a delivery of 7500 kgs of hay today. They live half a km down a forest track, accessible only by a 4x4 or a tractor and have been unable to get a hay and straw delivery down the track due to the recent snow covering and low temps - their cows and goats were experiencing lean times! We have had a thaw over the last 24 hours but with more snow due over night, they had to take advantage of the weather window. I volunteered our services to help stow the 30 x 250kg bales in their new barn - we were also joined by Rik from Las Trinquades b&b just up the hill. Patrick from the dairy farm at Col del Four's tractor was put to good use, transporting 4 of the large bales at a time down the muddy track and with Justin's 4x4 jeep and trailer ably carrying 3 bales we made good progress. It was good to get the first few bales stowed in the dryJustin's dog, Sumba, found a warm, cosy, hay-strewn corner from which to watch us work!Within 3 hours we had filled the top floor of the barn. The last job was to attempt to stow the last 2 straw bales on the ground floor. But the stall openings were simply not wide enough for them to pass and we resorted to cutting the twine on one of the bales in an attempt to put it away. Of course, the bale eventually collapsed and with much hilarity, Justin appeared with straw protruding out of places straw really shouldn't have gone!We retired to their cottage for a welcome cup of tea before heading home. 'Twas a job well done and I was pleased to have been able to help our friends.

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