Fortunately, the blustery sunshine dries the grain quickly and Farmer Humph is, in general, more concerned about the Mercator getting wet than the barley! Barley straw holds the moisture well which slows down combining, but we are making steady progress. Better still, during a trip to Manns of Saxham for new cutter guides, I found a new cabless combine in our price range!
Only joking Mercator! Much to the surprise of the other customer (sporting a Claas fleece - free with a brand new combine), not only do Claas still make Mercator parts, but according to the engineer, there are in fact three or four people locally who come to Manns for Mercator parts every year. Three or four? It's nice to know we're not alone.
..'Humphrey', 'Herefords', 'Humbug', 'Harvest' and 'FPU 732H', the Mighty Mercator's year of registration. Here it is back out in the fields for its 2014 test run. Thank you to Brad Farm Machinery for making this possible and allowing me to run in and grab new lifters at 5.02pm. I had been patiently following a tractor hauling grain, then a grain lorry, then another tractor, patiently not yelling: "You don't understand! I want to be harvesting too!". H is also for...Harvest Diva.
The bullocks have left the Marsh and are now roaming the Popple Field beside the house.
This year's new intake are already begging for apples; a new record for Mum's training regime. First thing in the morning, it can be alarming when you've forgotten they were in the field and a giant bullock suddenly looms over the hedge. Other fun occupations in the life of a bullock (and life on the farm is never dull!) include chasing chickens, staring out Humbug, and escorting walkers along the roadside - such gentlemen!
Obviously, staring in an unimpressed fashion at the activity around the house and farm shop is another favourite. As we haul bales back from the village, there's lots to keep them (and us) occupied. It was nearly Mercator time in our last blog post...but several cloud bursts later have bought a little time. Humbug is just going to have to toughen up and walk through the barley, and Dad can be found polishing the Mercator before the Mighty Beast is called to action.