Thursday, November 07, 2013

In the 'hood:

This afternoon's activity across the road:
Folks, this is a really huge combine, cutting the corn.  (The machine on the left.)  I wish I could tell you the hocus-pocus of what goes on with the combine, but I might be inaccurate.  Ah, well, here's what I THINK goes on.  (Disclaimer: I am not a farmer.)  I think the header of the combine takes the stalks and cuts them, and the cobs of corn are taken in.  I think the leftover cornstalks are used as forage for cows in the winter. That's a win-win.  From there, it is more hocus-pocus as to how the corn kernels are separated from the cobs.  And what happens to the cobs??  Happily, corn is filling the grain bin on the combine (the machine on the left.)  After two laps (my vocabulary; I am sure farmers use a different lingo) in the cornfield, there is a tractor pulling a grain cart which pulls up in front of the really huge combine.  They work alongside each other briefly, the combine harvesting and the tractor hauling:

Eventually the tractor's grain bin is full, the combine's bin is ready to re-fill.  And so the tractor takes its grain over to one of two semi trailer trucks, and augers the grain into their containers.

When the semi trailers are full of corn kernels, they can either make their way slowly down the road, approximately  six miles, to the local grain elevator.  There, the semi is weighed, with the corn in the back.  And then the semi driver dumps the corn, and the semi is re-weighed.  That's how the elevators gauge the corn amount.   Or, the semi trailers can make their way slowly to the farmer's own grain bins ("on-farm storage"), and then the farmer can decide the whats and whens and wheres with the grain.

It is always mesmerizing to watch the farming activity here in rural Kansas.  Season-to-season, we witness a business of which other folk may have no clue.  Disking, (or plowing and then disking), fertilizing, planting, spraying, and then harvest.  Prayers for rain or for no rain, or maybe a smidge of rain. Hoping for snow, hoping for no snow, worrying about hail, and drought, and omigoodness.  Farmers are closer to nature than anyone could claim to be.  Plus, they embrace science and technology.

So!  These are the people in my neighborhood...(Mr. Rogers...yes?)

And our cats?  Yes!  They are harvesting as well.  It is kind of unsettling to see how many field mice are being "harvested", now that their food source has been removed.


Gill said...

Who is winning in the mouse harvesting?

twebsterarmstrong said...

Oh, this is so pathetic!! MacArthur is THE MOUSER. But little kitty Martin just lies in wait and STEALS poor old MacArthur's winnings.

But it's a win-win: field mice are not house mice, and MacArthur is training the little kitty Martin.

After to years of inactivity, MacArthur has finally become the mouser we had asked for!

twebsterarmstrong said...

Two years:

After two years of inactivity, MacArthur has finally become the mouser we had asked for!

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