Before you read the next paragraphs, I want you to know, I don't consider myself driven. In fact, I might even be leaning toward the lazy side. And while I've been combining my ass off at every available opportunity, I can't keep from thinking if I was a harder worker, I may be done by now. I'm just saying, a Sunday on the couch with my wife and a stack of movies is looking pretty damned attractive right now, even though the end of combining doesn't mean that's any closer.
Anyways, the last three nights haven't gone so well. Thursday around midnight, the cab of my combine filled with the distinct smell of smoke. I spent a good half hour going over things but there was no sign of anything burning. I decided to continue, but before I finished the round, was shut down buy the sound of banging and clanging. Unless you're in the drum corps, banging and clanging are not good sounds. So I went home and tried to sleep with my memory filled with all of the images of combines burnt to a crisp, mid swath, that had flooded my twitter timeline over the last month.
Friday night, at 4:00 am, (which I know is technically Saturday morning, but the days are all sort of running together here) as I was unloading canola, again with the banging and clanging. In the hopper tank of my combine, there is metal slide that helps distribute the grain evenly in the hopper. That broke loose, and was eaten up by the auger. So I got shut down again.
|That doesn't belong in there.|
Last night, (Saturday) I was trying to clean up the last of my wheat, and it was trying to rain. I had so little left, and the more it drizzled, the more difficult it got to get the crop into the combine. Wet crop doesn't slide as well as it needs to, to get where it needs to go. You're not supposed to combine in the rain, and I probably looked like an idiot. Then half my lights went out, and the slip clutch fell apart.
On the bright side, my combine didn't burn to the ground, and the Thursday banging and clanging wasn't such a difficult fix, so it didn't take too long to get going again. Friday night, 4;00 am banging and clanging, was easily fixed by cutting the slide out of the auger with the cutting torch, and everything still works without the slide, so not so bad either. Saturady night, I was able to patch the slip clutch back together enough to finish the field with the lights I had left, and even though the straw was getting quite damp and hard to get through, turned out the wheat was still dry. So that was good.
When I eagerly began this harvest I remember the moon was full and bright in the sky. Now the moon is full again, and I'm eagerly anticipating the end of harvest. Granted, I lost a couple weeks in there, because of rain, but it's been a long-assed haul. I'm ready to be done. I have one field to go, and weather permitting, and if everything hangs together, I should finish on Monday. The light at the end of the tunnel is in sight, and I'm headed in that direction. Cross your fingers.
...........also, when you're combining between midnight and 4:00 am, majestic Mr. Owl likes to fly in and sit on the side of the truck and watch me combine. Apparently when I leave, he also likes to sit on the combine. I can tell by the nasty gift he left me on the deck plates in front of my door the next morning.