Who needs a truck in Maine?

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We always had a truck on the farm when I was a kid in the Adirondacks. Usually a Ford, and often red. There was always a lot of wire and baling twine holding something up or on. Things that fell off weren't considered that important, as long as it kept running. And it usually did. That was when you didn't need a mechanic's degree to work on a car. My dad always seemed to make it run, most days.

We were always carrying something for the farm in the truck, as I remember: bags of grain, rolls of barbed wire, hay bales stacked up over the cab. That was my personal favorite as it was my job to stack the load. A good day was when the bales bounced and shifted, but never fell off as the truck crawled over the field on the way to the barn.  A bad day was when the entire load fell off and you had to start all over again. And if you were really good at stacking hay, you rode on top of the load all the way to the barn, proof you could trust your work. (Sometimes trust is a funny thing with bales of hay ...)

Then I moved away to college, began a few careers, moved to Boston and never had need of a truck. Fifteen years living in and around Boston, where most things were in walking distance or a quick hop on the T. In all that time, and never a desire for a truck (unless I wanted to buy one to impress the neighbors; I never felt that need.)

Things change; careers come and go. Sometimes you get to the point where you realize - careers aren't all they're cracked up to be. Sometimes, careers get in the way of life. That's where my wife and I were last fall. She'd had enough of a high-pressure job. Her family lives in Maine, and her dad had passed away at home after a long bout with cancer. We were all with him up to the end - the entire family. He passed on with dignity and love. And that experience make you think. Hard and long. So, she quit her job and decided to go into the antiques and collectables business on-line. Then we decided to move to Maine to be closer to her family. I kept my job, knowing I could keep doing it over the internet full-time. After all, I worked from Maine for three months while acting as a care-giver for her dad. So, last December, we rented an old farmhouse in Chesterville. All our life-stuff that used to fit in the back of the Festiva when we were first married now took two U-Hauls. Somehow, we survived our first winter in Maine, and it really wasn't that bad. No, really.

Spring came. Finally. Things turned green. That was my first proof snow might not be year-round in Maine.  My thoughts turned to a garden, now that I'm in Maine.  At an old 1820's farmhouse. With a shed, and a woodshed and barn. Of course I had to have a garden again.

So, with the neighbors' help and guidance a spot in the meadow behind the house was turned into a small plot. All this spring I roto-tilled, dug and planted.  I laid black fabric weed cover over the entire garden. Probably not the best thing I could have done, looking back on it.  The weeds grew just as well under it as through it. So, I decided it was time for a few bales of straw to really keep the weeds down. Right... off to Agway.

I park my Mazda Protégé between the pickup trucks in the parking lot and go in to buy some bales of straw. Yup, they've got plenty, and since I have no idea how much I need for the garden, I buy two bales.  The kid at the cash register asks the other associate near by to go get the straw and bring it to me in the parking lot. He goes out back, while I purchase some herbs on sale for the garden and go out to my car.  I watch as the associate wheels the bales through the lot, looking at the trucks, trying to figure out which one is mine.  Then he sees me at the Protégé. He looks at the bales.  Then at my car. I can tell what he's thinking.  "He's not from around here." Yup.  I'm not. Not originally, anyway.

We got those bales in the car.  One in the trunk, and one propped up in the front seat. Truck?  I don't need no steenking truck! I pulled out of there with the windows open and loose straw flying everywhere.  But I got it home to the garden.

Just one problem. Two bales weren't nearly enough to cover the garden. My estimate?  At least four more. Hmmmm... It's possible. One in the trunk, two in the back seat and one in the front seat again. Yes!  So, if you see a guy with bales of straw stuffed in a Mazda, well...., let's just say I'm on my way back from Agway again.

Wonder if my dad's old truck still runs... It might make the trip from northern New York to western Maine.... Just a thought.....

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This page contains a single entry by JeffAdminist published on September 4, 2008 7:36 PM.

Introduction: Random Thoughts of a New Mainer was the previous entry in this blog.

Cats Are Great Mousers, Right? is the next entry in this blog.

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