Friday, February 24, 2012

Hello, Hay! It's me, Hannah

I've often heard people refer to the "adventure" of a particular line of work. Well, farming is definitely an adventure. Every day there's something new to solve, new ideas to implement, and new situations experience. Recently we experienced an excellent example of adventure

Goats eat grain for their main food, but we also keep them a steady supply of all the hay they want. It's an excellent source of protein and energy, and helps them maintain body heat during the winter.  With over 10 goats, we go through quite a bit of hay. Each bale we give them lasts about a week. Last time we realized that we only had three bales of hay left, we knew that we had to get more soon. One Wednesday we went to get our hay. We buy 20 rectangular bales at a time, and it fills our trailer. The girls were working with cattle for the upcoming Dixie National Jr. Roundup. So this was their day to do that, too.  We were getting a late start home, and it was dark when we left with the hay to make the hour and a half trip. We stopped after about 10 minutes to get gasoline, and while it was pumping, we checked the lights, the ropes, and the overall security of the hay. What we forgot to check were the tires... 

I bet you can see where this is going...

After we got on the interstate we traveled with no sign of trouble for about 30 minutes. We  had noticed that the trailer was rocking more than usual, but we decided it was probably nothing to worry about. Then we felt it... The tire went "FLUMP" and then we heard the rubber start flopping. We pulled over as soon as we could, and I got out to assess the damage. Most of the rubber was already gone, and there was no way we were going anywhere on it. There was a spare, but I don't have much experience with blow-outs, so I wasn't sure exactly what to do. It was now around 8:30. It was dark, and our nearest contact was at least 40 minutes away. We sat still and quiet until help could come. He and I changed the tire (he said the spare was O.K.) and then we started up the interstate. We made it home around 11:00 that night, and went to bed SOON after! 

If I had to summarize what we learned in this event, I think I would say that we learned to check the tires, try to be home before dark, and learn better how to change a tire. I hope we're never in a situation like that again, but if we are I plan to be better prepared.