Sunday, August 23, 2015

Round Bales As Far As The Eye Can See

I don't know why but I love the sight of round bales in the fields. I think it's because to me, they are the most visual representation of the hard work of farmers. Cows and grain and pastures and barns are obvious, sure, but somehow these bales -- the hay mowed, raked and baled under the hot sun of August -- seem to me the most visible sign to passersby that farmers work hard.
Haying is just one part of the work but it is a vital part -- this is what beds and feeds the livestock. And it is hot and heavy work.
Every August, my husband and his father start reminiscing about their farming days, when hay was done in square bales, and invariably my husband comments, "On a day like today, up at the peak of the hay mow, it would be 250 degrees."
He loved farming, he misses farming but he almost shudders when he recalls the dust and heat of a hay mow.
Farming is hard work, filled with long days, long nights, failures and successes, sorrows and rewards, rain and sun, snow and heat. When I see these round bales lounging in the fields in August, I think of the farmers -- young and old -- who do this work year-round, and wish we considered farmers "heroes" instead of race car drivers and baseball players.

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