Silage, a new gate and Chester breaks my finger...
We have nearly used all the silage at Wallacefield. Now I know the cattle love it but it’s a massive pain, we don’t have a tractor so we pull the bales apart by hand and fill the quad trailer with it, and then take it out to the cattle. We hadn’t intended to have any silage, we normally have small baled hay and some Hayledge, both of these have the advantage of being easy to handle and move about. The wet weather last summer meant that the last cut never got dry enough, hence silage rather than waste. The last bale is now open and the end is in sight. It would be best if the grass would start growing with some enthusiasm now, but the cold nights are not helping so we are still feeding some of the cattle. At least we have enough to keep feeding them; there is no need for rations here.
We are fixing a new gate at Willowford. There is an area in the bottom field by the river that is having the stock excluded so that the Alder’s can regenerate its all fenced and now just needs its shiny new gate. Somewhere a calculation has gone wrong because the post is in the wrong place and the gap is too small, but it’s easily fixed. We dig up the post and move it to a more suitable location. As we are doing this two cheeky Swaledales and their lambs wander past on the riverside and head into the newly fenced area. The riverside is not quite stock-proof yet, but soon they won’t find it so easy. We soon get the hinges in with Liam wielding the ridiculous drill bit and the gate looks great, it’s probably the best functioning gate on the farm. Most of the others are suffering from either old or tractor attack, or a combination of the two.
I don’t get on with Chester the pony. I’m not really a horse person anyway but Chester seems to take delight in annoying/biting me. I do however feel a bit sorry for him today; he has Laminitis and has been stuck in his stable so I’m taking him for a little walk. Big mistake. I think he might like a chat with Gladys so take him to the track next to her field, this is when disaster strikes. When I open the gate he gets excited and charges off, ripping the lead rope out of my hand, but not before my little finger gets dragged along the barbed wire fence and into a post. Now I’ve never knowingly broken anything but the sickening feeling tells me that’s what I’ve done, plus the end of my finger is at a funny angle. I think I said some pretty choice words. So 3 hours in A&E, x-ray, a bone doctor gives it a good waggle and three medical students watching me get strapped up whilst I try not to swear. I’ve got a slashed, black and crooked pinkie in a funny plastic brace; Chester and I are not friends.
It Brampton farmers market this Saturday and I’ve volunteered to go and help set up, this was before the finger incident but I’m going to try anyway. It’s a nice bright morning though there is a bit of a breeze which threatens to blow the pop-up’s away. I’m not much help putting them up but kind of direct things and stand about looking useful. I manage to tie-wrap the stall together to prevent them from taking off, this is my main contribution. There is a fair bit of sympathy and some of the other stall-holders exchange broken finger/horse injury tales with me. I get some treats (I’m sure I’ve earned them!) and head home. I never realised how important the pinkie is, it’s all about grip apparently.