Sunday, April 8, 2012

Farm Life Revisited

I'm sorry, I didn't quite hear that.  Did you say you wanted MORE farm posts?  Well, I guess I can oblige you just this once.

Lena and I are presently on the couch, decompressing from another whirlwind weekend at the farm.  This time, it was only a one-nighter and our main purpose was to see my grandfather on Easter, so it wasn't much of a working event.

Nonetheless, I did manage to do some investigating around the property.  If you have not been able to figure it out yet, my ancestors were not big on throwing things away.  At least until the generation preceding me.  Those guys are all about burning stuff.  Big time.

Although I did spend time out on the farm as a youngster and had likely explored many of the various nooks and crannies of the farm while avoiding the electric fencing, it had been at least 20 years since I really went and looked at any of it.

Here is a photo of perhaps the most recent true interaction I had on the farm:

It is always wise to stay hydrated when doing chores.

So as you can see, I know a lot about farming.  But there are some "gaps" in my knowledge, I guess.  Thankfully, my dad is pretty good at helping to explain things when my expertise reaches its limit, which is somewhere after identifying that I am standing by the barn and there is a calf in the pen.  Oh, and my water bottle was from Taco John's.  That I know for sure.

Before we start our photographic Odyssey, let me clarify that a few things have changed in the past 20 years.  That barn behind me in the above photograph?  No longer standing.  This and more you shall see as we begin...

Boo-ya.  THIS is what remains of the barn.
Sorry to start with such a shocking picture.  If it is any consolation, the barn only came down completely in the last year.  Prior to that it still looked like a barn, but it had long since ceased to be used as one.  Also, it was a bit of a liability as it was ready to collapse at any second.

"This used to be our playground..."
Do you know what you are looking at in this picture?  If you do and are not related to me, you must be pretty cool.  We should hang out some time.

If you cannot guess, I will just tell you.  This is the remains of a silo.  A small silo, to be clear, but the large concrete pieces are known as "staves."  For an illustration of how this looks in assembled form, look to the upper left of the photo.  That would be the big silo.  See all those metal bands around the outside?  That is what holds the concrete staves together.  Cut those bad boys off and watch out!

If you want to know first-hand how that can all go down, ask my uncle and cousin.  They were the brave souls responsible for bringing down the little guy pictured above.  He had not been used for as long as I can remember.  Heck, he no longer even had a roof.

When my brother and I came out to the farm as kids, we would sometimes sneak back into this area and go into the small silo to play.  If I remember correctly, there was a good deal of vegetation in there and perhaps even a small tree.  For someone with a vivid imagination, it was ideal.  But now its gone.  Oh well.

So many possible uses, so many laws against those uses.
I won't keep you in suspense on this one.  It is a corn crib.  But it is no longer in use, so I have tried to come up with other ways to make it worthwhile.  Obviously, it could work as an aviary, but I am not that fond of birds, are you?  It is way too small for the dogs, and honestly, the idea of imprisoning some living creature inside just seems kind of cruel.  Unless they were those lady beetles that seem to multiply and flock to my bedroom.  I have no problem with cruelty to them.

Always watching...
You really should know what is pictured here, so I will spare you further commentary.

Welcome to the jungle!
Now I have you stumped, right?  Although this may look like some sort of Midwestern torture device, it apparently is used to cut corn.  I think.

Now THIS should be obvious!
So this is either the markings of a buried body or a gathering spot for my grandfather's larger rock collection.

That is enough for outdoor exploration.  Let's go back into the house.

Kind of ominous, right?
China cabinet or liquor cabinet?  Both?
These things summarize my personality.  Discuss.
Can you find a scenario where all of these items would be used?
So SOME people did work this weekend.  Witness the removal of the porch linoleum.  Or at least the start of it.
Well, that is about all I have to say on the subject.  I doubt that I will have any new farm photographs to share for a few more weeks.  By that time, the kitchen may almost be done, so I may have some more modern technology to feature.

In the meantime, Happy Easter to those who celebrate it and Happy Sunday to those who do not!

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