Tuesday, 4 October 2011

You need a strong arm......

....around a farm.

It seems to me, as a late incomer to farming, that everything built on a farm - gates, fences, barns, machinery stores etc. is built to last forever. In other words, built of some heavy metal which is almost impossible for anyone of 'normal' strength to manipulate. Farmers, because they are manipulating it all the time, build up the strength over the years. And even when the said items - gates for example - become old and rusty, they still work (after a fashion) and are left in place as having 'nothing wrong with them.'

Thus the gates at the bottom of our yard have become (to my eyes) an eyesore and - more importantly - too heavy for me to open and close, particularly on a day like today, when the wind is blowing fiercely against them. This means that I can only reach my chickens by going round by the paddock and similarly if I want a handful of parsley from the garden. Frustration has set in.

But miracles can happen and the farmer informed me at lunchtime that the scrap merchant is coming in the morning to collect all the scrap metal which is lying about the place. Before then he intends to remove these two gates ready to hang two new gates he has had made - two lighter gates (and infinitely more attractive).

It really will not make a scrap of difference to the hens that for a week or two there will be no gates in place. For weeks now they have soared over the top of the old gates to reach the bird tables, where tasty titbits of niger seed and sunflower hearts fall regularly to the ground.

I find something very cleansing about getting rid of rubbish - I think the farmer does too, although he is much more reluctant to do it. I frequently throw things away and then wish I had kept them. The farmer, on the other hand, has bits of wood he has kept for years 'in case they might come in useful.'

Are you a hoarder, or are you a chucker-out regardless? I would love to know. One thing is for sure - there is really no happy medium, is there?

26 comments:

John Gray said...

photos of new and old please!!

thousandflower said...

Around here the main problem is that I am short and my husband tall. So I have trouble reaching a lot of things he does easily.

As to trash, well, we are hoarders. It might just come in useful some time, right!! And it never seems to fail that we throw away something we haven't touched in 5 years and the next week want it. Sigh. Our kids will have to deal with the overflow.

mrsnesbitt said...

I am sorting as we speak! Tip/Freecycle and charity shop will all benefit!
By the way - pop over to my blog!!!!
Denise xxx

Rubye Jack said...

Never could I be a hoarder. I look at saving something for just in case it is needed later as something that costs me with regard to where to keep it, running out of space, etc. Some things I will keep around for a year, but if it hasn't been used in that time, it goes.

Tanya @ Lovely Greens said...

I think I've become pretty good at determining what I'm going to use and what will lie around gathering dust. It must come from being a nomad in my 20s - hoarding becomes expensive when you move from country to country!

Gerry Snape said...

Oh I know how you feel...I throw things out an almost the next day or week need it frantically!
Our chickens used to fly over the fence to get to where they wanted to be. funny creatures!

Heather said...

When my husband retired he decided he would help me by ironing the bedlinen and other 'square' items. He hated my narrow ironing board so made it wider by bolting a heavy new top to it. I can hardly lift it out of the cupboard and hate having to wrestle to put it up and then again to put it away.
Hoarding? I have learned the hard way by throwing stuff out only to find a use for it shortly after, but dread the day we have to move out of this house!! I would love to see your hens flying over the gates. You'll be out there opening and closing the new ones, just for the fun of it! Thankyou for the lovely comment you left me on my blog.

acornmoon said...

I can appreciate why you need new gates but on the whole built-in obsolescence really annoys me. My mum had a fridge that lasted decades but new fridges seem to be programmed to brake down, as do vacuum cleaners.

We spent the morning clearing out stuff from our attic, it can be quite cathartic.

Titus said...

You're so right Weaver! I'm genetically chucker-outer, husband is hoarder. We don't argue about it, but I do sigh a lot at his various 'collections' in out-of-the-way places. Just in case.

Gates sound great - our front gate is off too at the moment, but only for a re-paint.

angryparsnip said...

I too want to see the old and new gates....
In my home I am a minimalist just a few favorite pieces plus Tucson is a dusty place to live so no extras.
MY studio is another thing. I love paper and where ever I travel will save newspaper, tags, wrappers. I buy books, cards, notepaper, pencils, pens, inks, brushes on and on... if my children travel with me their mantra is "step away from the paper and no one gets hurt" My studio is stuffed because I can make something with my finds and usually do.

cheers, parsnip

Bovey Belle said...

I'm a hoarder and so is my husband. Sometimes I have a grand clean up and quite often find that the very things I threw out have been reinstated in the shed by OH. Or, he allows me to chuck them and then, barger me, a couple of weeks later what do we need? Yup, you've got it!

Good news about the new gates and I am awfully impressed that your scrap man calls by appointment. We just get sporadic visits, dictated purely by the price of scrap metal, and the arrival of the scrap man is heralded by screechings of his van horn . . .

Robin Mac said...

I am married to the best hoarder of all time!! I moved a lot in my twenties so I learnt early to throw what would not fit in my suitcases. We have the painters in the house at present and have to pack up everything to move sideboards, bookshelves etc in our living room. I thoght this was a great opportunity to be rid of things which haven't seen the light of day for nearly thirty years (like an old fondue pot - when was the last time fondues were in fashion?), but I don't think I am winning the argument.....our kids will just have to deal with it all.

Penny said...

Oh dear, I am a horder, heaven knows what will happen if I ever move!

Mary said...

So happy you will have new, lighter, easier for your shoulders, gates. Can't wait to see them hanging.

I'm less of a hoarder than DH.......who would save everything if he had his way. I think it's a guy thing - saving the army boots, basketball sneakers, bank statements and such!

We are really strapped for storage space and for several years have been going to clear the attic come Autumn when it's cooler, like right now. Still haven't done it though because we always seem to be preparing to go off somewhere! Maybe in the Spring??????????

Mary X

Loren said...

Maybe before taking wedding vows the minister should ask both bride and groom whether they are hoarders are throwers.

I didn't realize what a problem it might be until my second marriage — and our relocation to a smaller home now that there's just two of us (but more than enough things for a family of four).

Hildred and Charles said...

Oh dear, - I have all my looms and weaving equipment, boxes and boxes of cotton and silk and wool for warping and wefting and that is to say nothing of Charles' tools and bits and pieces, some of which belonged to his grandfather!!! We are hoarders deluxe, and blame it all on the great depression that taught us to save in case of need. I do admire people that know when things are no longer 'keepers'!

Cloudia said...

Having just moved house, I appreciate that we travel light; but I do enjoy my little treasures. . .


Warm Aloha from Waikiki;

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Nora said...

I used to be married to a hoarder and am very glad that I'm no longer because I'm a tosser out and can't stand a mess. I don't like thing taking up space and gathering dust. There's a limit to how much a person needs to hang on to. Good luck with the new gates.

Delaine said...

Not hoarder a treasure keeper, for everything I tuck away is some bit of treasure I found searching for the find of finds. I collect antique quilts and any and all special vintage textiles. I find, my combulsion has gotten better I am now doing a if one comes in two goes out; it is sort of working. I buy old necklaces for the beads and then make new pieces so the plan it to use the treasures one way or the other...There are rules:#1 the house must have order the treasures must always have a place to hide.

patteran said...

It's just we sentimentalist sightseers that enjoy the sense of the past that is to be found in the ancient ironmongery of the farm. If you've still got an old blue Fergie somewhere, hang onto it!

Leilani Lee said...

I tend to be a hoarder. After a frenzy of cleaning up, husband has caught me going through trash cans to make sure nothing that "might be useful later" has been discarded. However, he too is a hoarder, so we are in serious trouble.

H said...

By nature, I am a hoarder, but living in a tiny house in Old Trafford with two young children definitely taught me to be a 'releaser'. I have come to enjoy the satisfaction of getting rid!

I'd love to see photos of the new and the old too please :)

Rachel said...

All farmers keep things, I don't think of it as hoarding. Farmers are very resourceful people and make and mend lots of things of old scrap and anything that may be useful. And in the end the odd bits of wood that are not used can always be put on the fire and scrap metal prices are very good at the moment so a trailer load of scrap to the merchant up the road will bring in some useful money.

Elizabeth said...

Your new gates-to-ge sound to be treat in store.
I must say I find getting rid of things very cathartic --and I never miss them.
However, even I hang on to some things.
I still have an ancient nappy-pin from son's infancy --so useful for too tight waistbands.......
do people still use such things?
Pretty summery weather here but I feel swimming is over for the year.

The Weaver of Grass said...

It seems from all the comments that I have hit a raw nerve over whether to hoard or chuck out! Thanks for the views and the comments.
As for putting on photos of the old - well they came off, went on the scrap lorry and disappeared out of the gate before I had got out of my dressing gown! The gate posts are in place and I shall post the new ones when they are put on one day next week.

Jenn Jilks said...

I have a client who hoards. It is tough. You go!