The bad year, 1982, part two
Bobby had placed 4x4 on the pedals of the tractor using adjustable stainless steel hose clamps. I was nervous, that was a pretty big tractor to me, 18hp ford. I drove around in low gear as Bobby walked telling me what to do. That evening at the dinner table he told mom how well I did and felt I was ready to start working the fields with him, it was a proud moment for me, and I did before my older step brother was allowed to.
Tho we weren't church goers, some Sunday morninsg we would sometimes listen to church hour on the radio as we sat and ate breakfast together. Often there was small talk, a few jokes and giggles. It was like a right of passage, Sunday morning brunch. The animals would be fed late as we sat many Sunday morning together, almost never were problems talked about, it was like highlighting last weeks events, all the good ones.
Excited about school ending, work on the farm always felt good that time of year. Now, if you think that my chores were split because Bobbys son moved in, they were lessoned, but he took on some of Bobbys chores. I was able to sleep in 30 minutes later.
The following weekend after grandpa left, Bobby, myself and his son Joey went to the country store to get seed for planting. The store ran lines of credit, and I guess ours was maxed out because we left without seed. Those were adult affairs, so I don't know why. When we returned home, mom was straight on the phone. Us children were taught that we needed to leave the room when they were on the phone dealing with business affairs. So Joey and I went out to play with our cherrywood bows made with fly string. We would use golden rod dried staulks for arrows, sometimes you could find a good straight balanced one that would shoot really far, and if you were lucky you could find it again and use it over and over.
Mom and Bobby had left to go into town, we were told to check the oil and gas up all the tractors and stick around the house. When they returned, the truck was full of corn, oat, barley, treefoil, timothy and alfalfa seed. If for a moment you think I was happy because we had seed, your wrong. I was happy that we had it because I was going to drive the tractor and show off my driving skills to my mom. I think that was the first day I felt like a little man, even tho my work on the farm mattered, this was easy work.
It was my job to plant the corn field, so off I went, humming along, it took me about 4 hours to plant the large field. That evening the whole family road on the trailor pulled by Bobbys big tractor to the field I had planted. Mom agreed with Bobby that I had done a good job, but later when the sprouts came up, LOL... it was a little bit of a mess, but the corn grew anyway.
That evening as I laid in bed, thinking of my days adventures, I was a different little boy as when I woke up that morning. Now that I think about it today, 27 years later, thats the day that country life would be seared to the soul of my being.
You know, there were a lot of life lessons taught in that field of corn.
Courage- It was the first time using a big tractor to plant a field and I was scared, but I pushed forward.
Trust- I never worried about the tractor breaking down, I had given her a pat when I first climbed on that moring.
Pride- I was doing something that really mattered on a big scale, it was an adult job.
Responsibility- I was trusted with a big tractor on my own and I was given a job to do.