Hay making.

Do you remember those days in the sun? those glorious memories of innocent fun. The ride on the trailer at the end of the day, on top of the bales of sweet smelling hay.

Ducking the branches and holding on tight, stacking the bales far into the night. with sores on our fingers and sweat on our brow, I wonder how many remember this now.

Riding the sledge and making small stacks, no wonder we all have knackered old backs. The bales on the bottom set on their side, a neat full old barn gave a feeling of pride.

The old sisal string that the rats liked to chew and then came the plastic, the pink and the blue. Cutting the strings right next to the knot, this is the farming that time has forgot.

And that sweet smell of hay drying under the sun, before all the hard work had even begun. With an Acrobat, Wuffler or old Vicon Lely, which skipped all the bits if it got a bit hilly.

The beat of the baler, the dust and the heat, patches on knees, old boots on our feet. And bottles of water left in the shade, waiting for days until we got paid.

And when we had stacked right up to the top, and the elevator finally came to a stop. We'd climb down the side without any care, with dust in our noses and bits in our hair.

Staying one step ahead of the rain. Working through blisters, the hurt and the pain. That sweet smell of hay when you open a bale, transports you right back as you smile and inhale.

Now time has moved on, the old baler is rusty. No more do we worry about bales that are musty. Now it's all silage but the memories remain of pitching up bales and the ride down the lane. Jan Millward©