Letting go of life’s relics

Big Blue, once a workhouse, is now a lawn ornament in Lorane. PHOTO PROVIDED

LORANE — Another quiet celebration combined with sad tones took place one morning, when Jim helped a man load his big Ford tractor onto a trailer and haul it away.

Big Blue and his less-powerful mate, Blue, served Jim well for many years in the hay fields around Lorane.

I spent a fair amount of time myself over the years on Blue’s seat, raking hay while Jim cut new swaths or baled the cured hay into big round bales with Big Blue. 

Neither tractor had a cab or umbrella — hence, no air conditioning, or even an umbrella to protect us from the sun. I didn’t mind though. 

I loved the feel of the gentle early summer breeze blowing through my hair as I watched the hawks sitting on the fence posts and buzzards slowly circling the fields above, waiting for us to pass by so they could swoop down and catch the mice and snakes left in our wake. I’m pretty sure my partial hearing loss was helped along by the loud drone of the engine as I circled those fields, but I wouldn’t have missed those years for the world.

Jim had to say goodbye to his cattle herd a few years ago — that was especially hard for him — and Blue and Big Blue have been lawn ornaments in our yard since we gave up the lease on the ranch. 

He finally agreed to offer both of them for sale recently, and Blue was picked up a few weeks ago … and now, Big Blue is gone. I have to admit, it will be a relief to mow the yard without having to avoid them, but that it is just one more thing Jim needs to disconnect from his busy life as a farmer.

It’s so hard to let go.



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