23 Mar Just Checking In!
It’s been ages right? I feel like its been ages… I’ve been panicking all week thinking that I’ll have to do another blog post soon but we’ve been hit with the dreaded bug, and on the run up to lambing it’s the last thing we need! So i’m just checking in before lambing to let you know that i’m still here and will be back into my blogging chair, possibly a little sleep deprived and maybe talking more rubbish than usual, in May!
So this week the dreaded bug has hit the Williams house and what a weird one it is. I was perfectly fine until Thursday night when I woke at 1 am with the worst stomach pain and then proceeded to throw up everywhere! I thought it was maybe something i’d ate until last night the exact thing happened to our youngest! Nightmare! We are supposed to be going out tonight too! We never really go out anywhere. I’ve turned into a bit of a home bird, or hermit, you choose! But as this one is back in my hometown and where I was pretty much brought up… The rugby club, I will soldier on through and hope that a few glasses of something bubbly will help – famous last words!
Yes I come from an absolutely rugby mad family! Like I’ve said before my dad used to play for our hometown of Tewkesbury until that one night he went to bed with what he thought was the flu and woke up the next morning (only aged 29) with Rheumatoid Arthritis in every joint in his body. That of course stopped him in his tracks with his passion of playing rugby. It broke his heart not being able to play the game he loved so much but he continued to support the club and never really missed a game. When he died he was chairman and so as I’m sure you can imagine I spent most weekends at the rugby club and I bloody loved it! I know, a lot of people may not agree with kids being in a rugby club, especially back in those days (90’s) when things were a bit wilder… I can remember a lot of rude songs, a lot of naked men and a lot of drunken fighting BUT it has shaped me into who I am today and I believe it is the reason I get on with men so much (I mean friends guys, come on!). I’ve always been a tom boy but thanks to the rugby club I believe I share the same sense of humour as men and will never be phased by anything that comes out of their mouths! Yep, the rugby club was a blast. One big, messed up family and I’m looking forward to seeing them all again tonight. It’s never been the same going back there since losing dad. I find myself staring at that one spot at the bar that he always sat at, on his chair, that the lads made especially for him. It was just a normal pub chair but someone had made a metal base with four metal polls on each corner, one for each chair leg, and stuck the chair into them, so that he could sit, raised, at the bar and be like everybody else. I often wonder what happened to that chair, its funny the things you get attached to isn’t it?
Anyway, I’m going off course again! A lot has been going on around here lately. The young lad that was working for us just recently had a baby and decided that he wants to work night shifts somewhere, and whilst I totally get it, it’s so frustrating to find a farm worker nowadays isn’t it? I mean a decent one that isn’t afraid of a bit of hard work! Back in the day it was much easier to keep a worker, most of the time they were happy to muck in if you paid in cider and everyone seemed to love the social. These days they’re either young lads that seem to just float from farm to farm with no real drive or passion, or they’re middle-aged and in our case have a problem with taking orders from Farmer Ben as they don’t want to be “bossed around” by a younger lad! When I first met Ben and started coming to the farm they had a Latvian lad working and living here. Andis had been here for many years and lived in his caravan on the yard. He worked hard and could turn his hand to most things, but he finally met a girl and that was that, he decided he’d had enough and after a bit of heated discussion (nothing out of the ordinary) he chose to walk out… at the start of lambing! We haven’t heard from him again since and that must have been about 6 years ago now.
Bloody hell I’ve gone off course again!! What am I like! Anyway, since the young lad left I’ve had to step up a bit and help out more when needed. This works well with me as I’ve always looked forward to the day I can get a bit more involved and since our boys are bigger now it’s much easier to do so. I love working with my farmer guy and generally speaking 99% of the time we work really well together. Maybe that’ll change as I find myself around more, who knows, ill keep you posted! So me being needed a bit more of course meant that I had to endure my first TB test. Now if you’ve ever spoken to me over on our Facebook Group then you’ll know that I have never really been a fan of cows. I get involved with the bucket calves until they get to that stage that they start going loopy around the shed and then that’s enough for me, I’m out of there! My reason for not loving them so much is that they scare me a little… Yep and I’m not afraid to admit it! I think there can be a bit of competition between farming wives with a few feeling that they are owed more credit if they do more than others on the farm, or that you aren’t a ‘proper farmer’s wife’ unless you work on the farm too. Personally I think this is ridiculous and so I’m not afraid to admit that until now I’ve left the cows well alone.
Anyway TB test day came and I was really quite nervous, I’m that kind of girl you see, if I don’t think i’ll be good at something I don’t tend to do it as I don’t enjoy being bad. Farmer Ben had assured me that i’d be in no way around the cows themselves and that i’d be stood to the side of the crush (the contraption that holds the cow still so that the farmer/vet can do what they need to do without being crushed themselves… Ironic!) and that my job would be to push the cows down the race and into the crush and then close the crush door behind them. A very long story short… I now love cows! Ok, Ok so I’m not about to go frolicking around the shed with them any time soon but come the last day of TB (the day of the results… We passed by the way!) I wasn’t afraid at all and found myself caring less about where they were and how close they were to me! Yes I have a long way to go but I really was very proud of myself and I know there are many that feel the same about cows as me… So my message to you is YOU CAN DO IT GIRL!
So with TB out of the way and lambing about to start its all systems go here. I say lambing about to start but we’ve already had a load of early lambers out in the fields… Is it just us or does everyone find themselves starting early due to naughty Mr Ram!? It literally happens every year! This year we have reduced our numbers considerably, not a decision I like as you all know I am lambing mad, but father in law is sure that Brexit is going to screw us on the lamb front and didn’t want to take any chances. So we are down from around 900 ewes to just 600 ish this year. I’ve told them all that next year I’m going to find myself a little lambing job before we start, to get my fix! Call me mad but I love the GO GO GO that comes with lambing 900 all in one hit. I enjoy the thrill and the constant workload… I’m sure this has something to do with being a nurse working on a stretched ward where there’s like 3-4 staff to 42 patients!
Our boys are so excited about lambing this year and its clear to see that Teddy (2) is going to follow after his daddy. He oozes farm and every morning now I wait for the tears and tantrums as daddy leaves for work without his little right hand man and let me tell you that Teddy believes that when he goes to work with Daddy he is actually at work and a valued member of the team. He tells Ben now “I will feed the cows for you Daddy” and it’s definitely getting harder the older he gets!
Hugo I’m not too sure about right now and I know you’ll say it’s too soon to tell but I don’t think Hugo is destined to be a farmer. He can take it or leave it and is more than happy to stay with Mummy whilst the other two go and do the work. I personally hope that he will go off and live and do something that brings more success to the farm whilst Teddy keeps it all going but as long as they are both happy that’s all that matters and they’ve got plenty of time to figure it all out!
So they’re both preparing for lambing 2019 and I reckon i’ll get them pulling their first lambs this year… Keep an eye out for the video! It’s bound to be madness, chaos, sweat and tears but we are all together, doing what we love and we cant wait! Happy lambing guys!
I could jibber jabber on all day but I have a box of hair dye with my name on and a pair of very pasty, hairier than you’d be comfortable with legs to shave before tonight… I hope I can remember where my hairbrush is and how to put make up on!
Love & Hugs