Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Mud and travel

General observations drawn from particulars are the jewels of knowledge,
comprehending great store in a little room.
                              John Locke

It is a most interesting time of year. We are on the cusp of a spring, or possibly our winter still has a last “hoorah” planned. Honestly we never really know what this time of year will bring. The winter here has not been a winter at all. Those of you on the east and west coast of Canada had a real winter. I have to say I missed ours. My snowshoes have never ventured outside of the house. 

I have no idea what those “psychic groundhogs” predicted. I tend to take my cues from signs that surround me, like our soon to calf cows, the roaming deer and not to forget the birds of every kind. Oh yes, February has always been full of surprises.

There are so many deer moving this time of year. You cannot drive without one running along a fence beside you.  In some cases, they jump out in front of you on a road. Be aware and watch for this. Just yesterday, I had to stop on a major highway and let six deer that had jumped over a fence near the bush.  One by one, they crossed the yellow center line on the highway and then jumped over the fence on the other side. I was not the only driver waiting and watching. There were no little ones with them but I am sure that time of year is very close. The winter must have been kind to them as they look pretty good. They are fatter than last year’s deer had been this time of year. Their coats are smooth and healthy looking. There was not a lot of snow around here, so they had lots to eat.

Turkeys in groups around fifty, or more (I lose count every time) frolic in fields where last year’s crop of soybean had no doubt left some spillage. They are very fat and happy I must say. I love seeing them. I usually pull over and just watch their antics.

Trees full of robins and juncos, then throw in the mix of hawks and woodpeckers always bring a smile. To my delight, our bluebirds are still here and picking out just the right house. Those new houses that we built last year seem to be getting a lot of attention. We may have to build more. They look like they are going to be a hot commodity.

Our cows, as I said are getting ready to calve and we hope for nice weather. This has always been an exciting time of year for us here on the farm but also a very busy and sometimes stressful one. We hope it will come and go quickly with happy results. I have no doubt I will be sharing those precious moments with all of you in the future.

Well, the snow around here is melted except deep in the bush.  Just last week where fluffy white snows once lie has now been replaced by mud. It oozes from under the tractor tires and tracks into the tractor and the house. My coveralls, no matter how careful I am seem to be covered every time I come in from the chores. Do not get me wrong I tend to have fun in the mud some days but our cows are not big fans of it. I move them around so they never have to stand in it or play near it unless they want too. They always appreciate that.

Yes, I take my signs from the animals that surround me and I am pretty sure our spring is on its way even though we really did not have our winter yet. Who needs a “psychic groundhog?”