Friday, July 26, 2013

Evening ride to the Cafe House

Yesterday was a busy day.

The last two weeks we had to bring in the hay, bales and bales of hay. Just when the first batch was in from the field, a guy who provides us good quality hay called and said, his hay was ready for pickup and off we went shuttling hay in the hay wagon from his place to ours. Hubby throws all the bales by hand up. Some weigh 12-14 kgs (so about 22-28 lbs) and the round bales we get from the other guy, weigh about 22-25 kgs (44-50 lbs). In between mowing our lower field and a week later the upper field the straw delivery arrived. Hubby throws all the straw bales by hand into the loft too. Of course, I'm the one who stacks. Slowly over the last weeks, the barn filled to brimming. And, although we have almost no more room, hubby is thinking about mowing a steep mountain field on the property, which we will have to bring in by hand due to the steepness (well, a little ways until we can get it to the tractor). Phew.



In all this, there was little time to do anything with the horses. And, with the extreme heat we've been having, the horses weren't really inclined to do anything either, given the biting horseflies and mosquitos after the flooding this year. We've been sweltering now for several weeks, which is the reason why it was a great haying season. So, yesterday my friend dropped by, while I was slowly catching up on left over chores. Giving the boxes a good sweeping out, instead of the rush rush mucking out while haying was going on. Clooney got a bath (he wasn't feeling very well in the heat), Billy Jack got a bath, and all the stallions got a good romp about. Cleaning, chatting, washing, putting things away the day went on. Washing was great because we got to cool off too as the water hose sprayed about.

Finally, as the sun started to go behind Grassberg (Grass mountain), it cooled off enough for a ride. We had heard that on Sunday the temperatures would rise to 102.2 degrees Fahrenheit. We had to get the mares out of here and up onto the mountain where they can go into the forest and be cool as the open stall boxes are probably going to be too warm. We never get temps this high mind you, we are in the Alps, you know...like Sound of Music or Heidi. So, my friend who helped me, and I saddled up for a ride to the mountain pasture. We took the village route going along the back roads. It was comfortable, the sun was gone but it was still very light out. People were sitting on their balconies crying greetings to us, inviting us for a drink, and generally coming out after hiding all day indoors. Mind you, no one has air conditioning here.

We made our way along past the old Heimathaus (an old farmhouse turned into a museum) that is on the road a bit above the village so we could look down and also around at all the mountains. Once almost in the center of town, we turned right and went down a small road that landed us at a parking lot in the village, and the Cafe House with its outdoor terrace where one can sit outside. There were lots of regulars there, and as we dismounted I saw the Innkeeper and asked her if it was ok to come into the garden, she nodded, as she has let us do this often before. We entered the garden terrace and sat down, each of us with a horse at our side and ordered a drink. There of course was lots of commotion, as the regulars laughed and enjoyed our visit with the horses. It's a yearly ritual, and everyone knows it is summer when the curlies arrive at the Cafe. After a nice cool drink, we mounted again (of course paying the tab) and road up the mountain to the pasture just before it got dark, and turned the mares loose with their friends to romp and be happy. There they can keep cool in the trees, and hopefully avoid the worst of the coming heat wave.

8 comments:

  1. The ride and café visit sound heavenly! We have had a heat wave in Maine this summer also, but our hay has not arrived yet. We will put up about 700 bales, and I am hoping for low humidity when it is ready.

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  2. Thanks Susan,
    I wish you the best. We put in 1200 from our fields, and probably about 200+ from the other farmer, and some loose hay too, that was thrown up with the fork, and up to the "bea" which is a wood platform above the hay loft :).

    P.S. Does anyone know how the Blog Posts are furthered to Facebook, none of mine have been on there? Thanks!

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    1. I think you need to "like" Curly Horse Country on facebook in order to see that they are posted through there the day after you blog. At least...that's what I think. I see them come up on facebook. Denise, please correct me if I am wrong. :)

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  3. What an awesome ride to the cafe!! Beautiful pictures! You have to go on a "scenic picture taking ride" for the rest of us! We've also had some mega heat in Ontario too. But really I'm not that far from Susan so not surprising!!
    (I think Denise posts to FB?)

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    1. What a great idea, next time my friend comes, we can take some scenic pictures. I have an old camera that's battery hatch is busted, and so to take pictures I have to hold the hatch closed really hard so the batteries stay in and try to snap photos, so it is not really convenient for riding. I think she has an Iphone or something, so that is easier!

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    2. Use duct tape. That's what I did with my old camera that did the same thing. Duct tape and electrical tape. It worked for a while. ;)

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  4. It was interesting to read about your haying process! Our square bales weigh 50 to 60 pounds and our large round bales weigh 800 to 1,000 pounds. Haying is still in full swing around here. I agree with Donna, you need to ride and take pictures and show us more! It's beautiful!

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    1. Hi Janeen,

      There are also 220 kg round bales here in Austria, so 440 lbs. The smaller bales are easier to handle at feeding time, they are much more work to get into the loft though, as the large round bales you can use a forklift and spikes and lift them up that way and just roll them into place!

      I will work on a scenic photo tour!

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