The first hay bales of the season are all wrapped up like giant brown marshmallows sitting in the field. Pastoral life is marked by the tasks that must be done and not by the manmade calendar, although there is an undeniable and inescapable rhythm. There always seems to be more to do.
|Waiting for the hay.|
I lived in a city a long time ago, and I used to think my life was very busy. Now when I think back to it, I can’t remember really doing anything. I worked a job, of course, and other than that, life seemed to be marked around social outings. Years seemed to pass very fast that way. I didn’t like my job at all, so in my mind, those days didn’t really “count” because I couldn’t have “fun” and I was miserable.
The only problem was that those five days a week didn’t count for me at all as being part of my life, which left me with the two weekend days, for a total of 104 days per year. At least half of those 104 days were spent buying the things I didn’t grow or couldn’t make and fighting traffic, which left me with 52 days per year. Out of those 52 days, at least 12 were spent in commitments to families, which left me with 40 days per year.
A 40-day year sure passes by fast, and several of those 40-day years can pass in the blink of an eye. But I don’t live in the 40-day years anymore, and I’m sure glad of that. The years have 365 days again and a lot of those days involve work and not social outings, but it’s not work I hate. I don’t really look at it as work anymore at all. I look at it as tasks that must be done in the inescapable rhythm of life, which I rather enjoy.
So the first hay bales sit in the field, and the canning season is well underway with lots of food being put into jars already. By the time fall comes around and the main harvests come in, I’ll be ready for the deep winter sleep. It’s not a manmade calendar and there aren’t any alarms that go off, but it works for me.