Fall is better on the farm.
When you grow up on a farm, fall and harvest memories are synonymous. You can’t separate the two if you tried.
Even if you move to the city,
and live there longer than you ever lived on the farm,
the memories you have are going to be
the smell of chaff streaming behind the combine harvesting wheat
poplar leaves in the hedgerows turning yellow
wild flowers seeded and blowing in the wind to create next spring’s color
corn silk sticking to fingers juicy from bursting kernels while husking
watching a golden stream from the auger creating an ever moving volcano-peak
of wheat kernels in the granary
and sometimes the harvest memories
are hilarious and you wish everyone would forget.
I was the designated driver of the truck we used to haul the grain at one point in our family farm days. It was a three-quarter ton pickup with a dump, information for any of you who claim to be mechanical.
I obviously wasn’t.
Plus I had a knack for confusing left for right, and vice versa.
And didn’t know the difference between regular fuel and diesel.
Recipe for disaster.
I was only sixteen, okay?
Thar she smokes
down the road, in a hurry to catch the next load of grain before the bin on the combine is full. So the combine won’t have to sit and wait to unload. So the driver won’t be stomping around the field and muttering and gazing off into the distance to see the dust from the returning grain hauler.
Ah, got there before the combine stopped. Win.
Not so much. What’s the smell?
And what’s the look of surprised disbelief on the combine driver’s face?
We won’t spell out the details of what happened next, as any grain farmer knows that a story about parking the combine to drain a fuel tank mistakenly filled with diesel by a ditsy sixteen year old does not bear telling.
Except years later when all the pain has been forgotten by the involved parties.
And the story is told and retold ad nauseum at family reunions.
But it still rates as a precious fall memory.
Just one you don’t want to repeat in action again, ever.
Do you have any hilarious fall or harvest memories? Please share.