Friday, 11 August 2017

This and that.

One of the disadvantages of being so long in moving (and my poor organisation) is that I have packed all my battery chargers so that I can't take a photograph of my airer to show you - my camera battery has run out.   I will have one more try:
Success!   Here is my airer - it works on a pulley system - the Aga is on the right (in the white space) under the oak mantelpiece.   I shall miss it
greatly when I move.

Now to what I intended to write about.   When I was a small child the only 'fodder' farmers could make was hay.   They waited for what they hoped was going to be a dry spell - no long range forecasts in those days which is why  old farmers are still such good weather forecasters.   Then they cut their grass - only one cut a year and then they hoped and prayed that the weather would hold.
Sometimes it did, sometimes it got wet a few times before it could be gathered.   My father in law, who was still alive when I married the farmer, used to say that there was only one year when it was an absolute disaster in his lifetime.

I well remember as a small child going to my Aunt's in The Dukeries (an area of Nottinghamshire) and going with the farmer to gather in the hay which had been left to dry in the field.   We would ride to the field on the broad back of the horse pulling the empty cart and ride back to the farm on top of a full hay wagon. Any smell of hay now brings back such a feeling of nostalgia for me.   No health and safety rules in those days.

The man who has bought our farm (still in the process of going through much to my frustration) is working it too - we can't let everything get out of hand during the wait after years when the farmer kept it in such good order.   After making silage he is now attempting to make some hay and to this end he cut yesterday in what was a glorious day here.   Now today it has been dull all day and has been attempting to rain for the last couple of hours - holding off so far.  Good weather is forecast for tomorrow and Sunday so let us hope he is successful.   If not it will all be made into silage - that is the choice farmers have these days.

Tomorrow I am going out to lunch to friend W's.   She has friends staying and I have been invited.  I look forward to it because I know there will be chips for lunch (their daughter loves chips and so do I but rarely allow myself the luxury).

27 comments:

Rachel said...

Ah yes, I also had one of these in my kitchen. It was called the kitchen maid and worked on a pulley. The weather has been sunny and hot here today.

Mrs said...

How handy must that airer be! I saw one for sale in a reclamation yard near Newark for a pretty penny! I'm from Nottinghamshire - close to Newark/Thoresby/Budby and Welbeck Estates - I bet somewhere close to where your aunt lived.

littlemancat said...

Enjoyed your post so much today. The old ones were so attuned to the weather,to nature. Hope you enjoy your chips!
Mary

Derek Faulkner said...

Hay and silage at this time of the year! - unheard of down here. Silage is normally a late Spring crop and hay early to mid-summer. Neither have been very successful this year thanks to the very dry Spring and Summer. What hay that was cut is going to be very expensive and the horsey people are gonna find it very expensive to feed their animals this winter.

Joanne Noragon said...

Thank you for the airer view. What a great way to handle laundry. No more folding it dampish after ironing.

crafty cat corner said...

That airer bought back memories for me. My Mum had one in the kitchen.
Briony
x

The Weaver of Grass said...

Mrs. Tried to go over and leave a comment but can'[t get to your site. My aunt actually lived in East Markham between Tuxford and Retford. I come from Lincolnshire and spent my childhood in Washingborough, just three miles from Lincoln, on the River Witham. We often used to go to Newark market, which used to be a very good one.
Yes Rachel - and I have seen them advertised as Sheila Maids too.

Cloudia said...

One must have chips from time to time. Thank you for sharing

Gwil W said...

Grandma had one in the scullery. The place smelled of carbolic soap and Tide (or maybe Omo).

jinxxxygirl said...

I'am curious Pat why could they not make silage back then? I admit i'm clueless... :) Love your airer and i'm sure you will miss it...Hugs! deb

justjill said...

Do hope its not too long before you are sorted, as I am sure you hope too. I remember it so well, offer in, offer out, then at last firm offer and then the long wait til we had a moving date. Enjoy your chips.

donna baker said...

Pat, I heard an old indian chief talking about his uncles shooting arrows over a barn and into a barrel. They adjusted for the breezes and wind. I hope all these old ways are remembered in our time. I know if the birds are sitting exactly the same distance apart on the overhead electric lines, rain is coming.

Heather said...

Those overhead clothes airers are wonderful and so practical. I'm sure you will miss the Aga too. We had one for only 2 years before we had to move again - it took me 6 months to make friends with it as there was no instruction book, it was just in the house when we bought it. What a treat to ride home on the back of one of those beautiful farm horses after haymaking. At least making silage saves losing an entire hay crop now.
Enjoy your chips. I never make them but do succumb occasionally if they come with a meal out.

Tom Stephenson said...

Anyone who runs an AGA ought not to consider chips a luxury. (Samuel Johnson, 1768)

Mac n' Janet said...

I gorge myself on chips whenever we're in England, American fries just aren't the same.

Cro Magnon said...

I have one of those airers; in bits. I have been taking it around with me for years, but have never had ceilings high enough to accomodate it.

coffeeontheporchwithme said...

I love the smell when hay is just cut. I have memories of hay wagons, but baled hay instead. I have wooden clothes drying racks, but the idea of hanging them over a warm stove makes so much sense. -Jenn

thousandflower said...

I, too remember "helping" to bring in the hay when I was a kid and later as an adult here on the island. I love riding on top of the hay wagon and I love the smell of hay.

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Virginia said...

An airer looks so much tidier than a clothes horse - up out of sight, out of mind. You will miss it in your new place. We have a pretty good hot water cupboard and I can hang things in there for a fine airing, but I still prefer to get it into the fresh air outside if I possibly can. Dryers just don't leave he clothes feeling the same, do they?

How difficult it must have been when baling hay was the only option. I confess I don't really understand how silage works either. Can you explain it please Weaver. I've presumed it is something to do with fermenting the grass?

I do hope the sales process concludes quickly.

thelma said...

I remember those hay bales, sweet smelling and the strings always digging into your fingers. Here after the first great rush of farm machinery past the house it went quiet, then this week they started up again, sometimes very late into the evening. It is of course all down to this rain, which has dogged us for quite a while.

roth phallyka said...

do succumb occasionally if they come with a meal out.


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The Dutchess said...

I so love your blog..:)

Elizabeth said...

A clothes airer is such a good thing!

Unknown said...

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Midmarsh John said...

I well remember dodging the washing hanging from an airer in the kitchen.

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