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night sounds and machinery headaches

Posted 6/29/2009 8:04am by Julie Hurst / Roy Brubaker.

We are lucky to have a large Black Walnut tree shading our house on the south side.  The tree and the constant breeze that seems to blow through our valley keeps our home very comfortable in the summer.  We took out the window air conditioner when we moved in ten years ago because we hated the way it blocked our view to the west.  We've never replaced it and so far we've stayed comforatably cool with an attic and window fans running at night.  I dug a window fan out of the attic the other night to put in the girls room for the first time this summer.  When the girls were babies the rythmic humming kept them sleeping longer through the night; it drowned out the sounds of logging trucks racing by at 4:00 am or cats fighting in the back yard or occassionally yelping coyotes running on the mountain.  I was surprised then to hear footsteps in the hallway long after we tucked the girls in.  I went to the stairway to find out what the problem was.  Frances looked disheveled and grumpy; the fan was keeping her awake she told me.  "It is loud and it drowns out all the nice night sounds like the peepers and tree frogs," she reported.   It was a simple problem to solve.  She turned it off, climbed back in her bunk, and slept soundly till 7:30 am. 

Once again, the few machines we depend on are giving us headaches.  The BCS rototiller/scickle-bar mower that we use to cut back the grass under the fences has been at the repair shop for over a week.  We cut the grass under our high-tensil fences instead of herbiciding it.  This time of year the grass load is heavy and on dewy mornings, it shorts out the fences and the animals begin to push their limits.  Last Friday,before leaving for work, Roy and Mac rounded up a cow and two calves that were wandering around on the mountain and just yesterday our neighbor called to tell us our sheep were in his alphalfa.  Thanks to Mac, they were rounded up pretty easily, but had the BCS been working, the grass cut, the fences shocking, it is very likely they would not have escaped in the first place.   The repair shop called this morning to tell us it was working again and soon after Roy's dad stopped by to look at our ailing tractor.  But that is another story.