From Where I Sit – That’s a Job

With the Babas & Borshch Ukrainian Festival behind me (except for post-event reporting, packing up supplies, and booking acts and sourcing funding for 2015) it’s time for my time and energy to be directed elsewhere.

In the near future my focus is on my role in getting the crop off to market. I operate one of the combines, do all the meal prep, and assorted go-fer jobs. With grain prices in the tank it’s hard to get too excited about our prospects for a profitable year. But like childbirth, we’re committed and there’s no turning back now. This baby must be delivered!

In between the farm work I have three weddings to perform. That’s meant finding time to meet with the couples to go over my questionnaire and discuss the logistics of their perfect day. Then I do the paperwork associated with making their vision a reality and satisfying the requirements of the provincial government and Vital Statistics. Then, on the day of, I travel to the site of the marriage and perform my duties.

It’s also important to do some of the pre-snowfall drudgery that exists on a much larger scale when you live on a farm. Cleaning flowerbeds, storing patio pots and furniture, and getting a jump-start on spring are all jobs that have us praying for snow by mid-November.

This fall, just to add additional pressure, we’ve ordered four 5000-bushel grain bins to store the yield. Many farmers are doing the same. We’re holding onto last year’s crop because we refuse to sell at those low prices. Hence the looming storage crunch.

If that isn’t enough we also plan on building a garage for moi. I’ve finally put my foot down. I think at least once before I’m dead I should have a garage to, like, park an actual vehicle in. Not collector cars, not tools and machinery parts, not man-cave junk, but the actual workhorse of a vehicle that gets me reliably from point A to point B. I know, it’s crazy talk, but hell, yes it’s going to happen. We have some able workers, Dial before You Dig guys have been here, we’re bracing for the cost, and yes, a concrete slab will be poured before freeze-up.

And that’s a good thing because yesterday we picked up our 2014 Toyota Venza from an Edmonton dealership. Roy’s been coveting this car since my mom bought one in 2009 and not long after we bought the Honda CRV. It’s truly too bad that we have about three miles of gravel roads to negotiate before we hit pavement because it’s hard on the paint and is impossible to keep a vehicle clean. Roy will drive the CRV til it stops. We chose not to spend $2800 on the ring gear/starter problem. Seven years and 280,000 kilometers later that ship has sailed.

Besides all that, I need to plan a vacation getaway for this fall or winter. Now that’s a job I can embrace, from where I sit.

Hazel Anaka’s first novel is Lucky Dog. Visit her website for more information or follow her on Twitter @anakawrites..

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