Saturday, 21 February 2009

My Hero!

I cant even begin to tell you how happy I am today, how good I feel, or how tired for that matter, but nothing and nobody stopped us achieving what we set out to do today. Its been one of those rare days where it all goes to plan, where even minor catastrophes didn't impede out progress. I feel great and I am going to ride this wave of euphoria caused by finishing a hard days work where for the most part of the day I have had the wind in my face and the sun on my back. I am going to milk this happy feeling before my body remembers it doesn't belong to a 24 year old marathon runner but to a 44 year old pie eater with a left arm made out of mechanno. Tomorrow I have no doubt I shall suffer, but that's tomorrow, and tomorrow I don't have 50 metres of fence to put up separating the top of Oak Bank from, er, well Oak Bank, so named as its a bank with an oak tree on it. Bank, more like apprentice cliff, up which we dragged a seemingly never ending number of fence posts.

Tracey and I normally do most things together but today to speed things up a bit she went to get a few essentials from town and a bag of coal for our tame hermit while I fed the animals and sorted the critters out so we could spend the day up on the hill fencing. She had been gone only a short while when I thought I would start banging the posts in, hoping to get five securely anchored before she returned.

Soon I was lost in my own machismo world, stripped down to my shirt sleeves enjoying the sensation of bashing the posts into the earth with a a MK1 fence post basher, a hollow metal tube with handles either side that fits over the top of the post, you lift it and drop it, you lift it and drop it and so on until the posts in. As I bashed away the tubular bell ring of every drop eased my frustrations caused by the negativity at work, the metallic ring providing my very own heavy metal soundtrack to my very happy life. My mind freed from the constraints of the office roamed freely and as I watched the goings on of our animals around me I covered topics such as pregnant dogs, goats that refuse to give birth, how my arm now allows me to tackle such jobs as fencing (we have had the posts a year and this job has been on the list that long) which 9 months ago I couldn't have done. My thoughts focused on my arm for a while, it was working pretty well lifting the 60 pound post rammer despite the fact I no longer have a left triceps, yes it was working pretty well, my own gun show, every Saturday arms and back, welcome to the gun show. I started counting the number of hits it took to put the post in, this caused a slight mind panic as my internal counting monologue refused to let me stop hitting the post on an odd number unless it was a prime number, so I stuck with evens, if it needed nine it got ten hits and so on, convinced I had Obsessive Compulsive Disorder as I racked up even number hits I started to fret about finishing on an odd number and it became imperative to put an even number of posts up before Tracey returned from the shops. Post thirteen was particularly stressful but soon passed and eventually 20 posts were ready for the wire.

My mind games were interrupted by a shout, "Oi! Cloth ears!" A Damsel was summonsing her Knight. However this was hardly the shout of a damsel in distress but I did detect that Tracey needed my help as she was stood in the yard below indicating that if I didn't get down sharpish there would be murders. As she was deficit Rene the Rx4 which she had set off town in I didn't have to be Sherlock Holmes to detect a spot of bother had occurred.

"Its a good job you're not on call" she said as I fell down the bank to join her
"I am" I countered
"I know, I've been calling you for half an hour" clearly she was not happy at my lack of phone answering.
As we walked down the lane she explained that Rene had fallen off the track and was in a ditch, as can be seen above, a deep one. It was as we sorted this out I knew it was going to be our day. A job that looked like it would take hours, thus preventing the fencing , took a matter of minutes as Rene was rescued by filling the ditch with rocks and simply driven out.

Steve and Little Steve called round just at the point where I needed a coffee so a fortuitous break with good humour was passed and then they helped drag the last posts up the hill, and carried the wire for me. Again, fortune smiled on us as we deposited the wire over the fence the wire roll began to, and as we watched in horror it stopped after a couple of yards refusing to obey the laws of sod and roll all the way to the bottom where we had fetched it from. Steve manfully hit the last posts in for me while Little Steve played Lion Tamer with the dogs, prising their jaws open and sticking his head in to inspect their tonsils. "I better get him home" said Steve as Little Steve approached Trevor with obvious intent of repeating the stunt.

They left us to it and the universe continued to bestow it good fortune on us as I hammered in 256 staples and not once did I hit my thumb or finger. We had enough wire, enough posts and as you can see from the picture below we finished before sunset and The Boys started to explore their new playground. Hey I even persuaded the birds to go to bed early, they went into the chicken house when I asked them to instead of exploding across the smallholding like an angry poultry firework. This meant that all the jobs were done and we have the evening to ourselves for a change. Nothing to do except eat nice food, share a bottle of wine and enjoy each others company.

Whats the betting the goat decides to give birth just before bedtime!

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