The wheel turns…

The African Billie styling for the girls!

September has crept upon us without much warning. I guess I knew it would show up eventually, but really crunching leaves already? Yesterday when Anthony, Michael and I met to get some grain the slight breeze was shuffling dry leaves along the road. Their familiar sound caught my attention as I pulled out toward Canaan proper for iced coffee. And under the tires the crunching of spring’s leaves now fallen and dry reminded me that indeed autumn was not a far away dream.

Of course we’ll have some time yet as this is not a harbinger of winter. Most years we are lucky enough to experience an Indian summer before the real seasonal weather settles in. There will still be some time to prepare for the onslaught of really cold weather and the precipitation called snow. However, the temperature on the porch this morning was a tad above 40 degrees. The forecasters were calling for a high of around 70 but the porch indicated a struggle to barely 60 something. The air does have the fall smell, too.

There’s definitely something about fall air. In addition the land clearing up the road has filled the air with the aroma of fresh cut pine. It reminds me of the little cans of Maine air that the tourists buy to take home with them. As if they could capture the flavor of Maine. Presently the pine air is in competition with the fresh hay in the loft. And combined the smells are indicative of my little farm.

Those of us that depend upon the local farms to produce hay for the winter months are hurrying to get hay lofts stocked. I’m thankful that my hay is already inside, stacked, and ready. In addition, if I use more than expected there’s plenty yet to have delivered. Last year I used about 800 bales and with the upcoming babies I’ll probably have to figure more for next year. However, the ability to have the hay covered is a good feeling when contemplating winter. The area has had a hay glut so there’s plenty around, too. Another farmer has just started to gather her winter supply to find that her budget for hay is more than adequate with costs so low this season.

Although I haven’t been to the auction several farmers have stated that the local hay is selling for less than $2 a bale. I have no idea what kind of hay it is; however, unless the animals are particularly choosy grass hay does fine. However, some people carry the chemical analysis of their hay a little too far. My critters haven’t read any chemistry books so they are pretty content to have grain, hay and water around here.

After the grain was unloaded yesterday Anthony and Michael cleaned a bit here and there. The pools were emptied and refilled. Both the goslings and Billies were ecstatic about their fresh water as they went about immediately getting it infused with just the right amount of dirt. This morning the pools aren’t as bad as before they were emptied; but, the geese had done their best work. There are feathers floating around in the air from the bathing. In addition, the Billies are into posing to get attention from the goslings. So far the goslings aren’t impressed and have been biting through the fencing. I hope that this isn’t indicative of the future combining.

This week the paint will be purchased for the goose house. Michael is drawing a design to put on the outside. The artwork will definitely enhance the area. I’m sure that it will be noticed by the locals who won’t know the different symbols. The geese won’t care either, but I’ll love to see it. One project at a time will be completed before the flakes of snow start flying around. Meanwhile I’m reminded by my cousins that spring is beginning in Australia. I’ll be able to enjoy their awakening through posts of flowers as mine disappear.
And so it goes…the wheel turns…
Copyright © 2011

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