"Hey Ken, it's Brian. We're up north and the person who was going to check the animals tonight can't do it now. Is there any chance you could run down? Everyone should be fine except the chickens might need more water."
"No problem, you got it."
"Thanks so much, we really appreciate it."
The above conversation is one that we had with our neighbor and good friend over the 4th of July weekend. I know we have great neighbors but I'm still amazed at how great. Ken and his family have been very supportive since we moved here. Brian helps him as much as possible during harvest and then Ken brings his equipment and harvests our fields. We would really struggle without his help. When our barn was burning, he was one of the first people I called (after 911 of course). Looking back, it is kind of funny. Ken ran out of the restaurant where he was eating breakfast with his wife and his brother, leaving them there. He flew in to our driveway in record time. Later, his wife and I cried together, with her remembering the dreadful day when their own barn caught fire.
Speaking of the fire, there were many people who helped that day. I remember two complete strangers pulling in, with their families in the car, and running to hook up hay wagons so Brian could stay on the tractor. Even the first police officer who arrived, seeing the situation, allowed us to keep pulling things out as long as we didn't go under the burning roof. One good friend from our church slipped a fifty dollar bill in Brian's hand that day. My cousin, her husband, Ken,and his brother all stayed late that night helped us put up a big tarp to protect our hay. That's them in the above picture. You really do find out who your friends are at times like that.
We have another set of great neighbors right around the corner. They'll borrow something, we'll borrow something. He even picked up my peaches from the orchard for me since I couldn't get there during business hours. Plus, our horses just love all the treats that they get over the fence.
I can't forget the neighbors across the section who called yesterday to say that they had a big bucket of berries for me. They are soooo good too. We know those neighbors pretty well since Brian is over there at least once a week, visiting or exchanging tools (okay, I should say drinking a beer instead of visiting). We have 700 bales of hay stored in there barn, and they've been asking us to bring some sheep over to graze there pasture for about a year now.
The other neighbors are the ones who inspired this post. He pulled in our driveway this morning and announced that he has something I can pick if I'd like. I think he said some kind of onion, I couldn't hear for sure. Pick every other one, he said, there is about 200 there so help yourself. I have to confess, I was a bit taken aback by him and his wife last year. After hearing we had asparagus, they pulled in, dropped some frozen sausage in my lap, proclaimed that was "for the asparagus", and proceeded out to my garden with buckets and scissors. Not knowing what to do, I sat in the house and watched out the window as they took what they wanted.
Nowadays, I understand. That's just how things work between neighbors!! :)
Do you have a great neighbor or a story to share about one?
What started as a blog about the happenings here on our Centennial Farm has now evolved in to a little more personal account of things from my point of view as a new farm(er's) wife. Stick around for awhile and hopefully you'll learn a little about everything from industrial and sustainable farming to raising livestock to being green and maybe even catch a good recipe or two. Enjoy!
We're on our way out of debt and on to greener pastures...