There was a small percentage chance of rain today, then no chance for the next 2 days, and then 30% on Tuesday, 25% on Wednesday and Thursday, so I wanted to start cutting the hayfield. We've had rain in the past 24 hours, but not flooding like we had last week, so there shouldn't have been as much evaporation. Unfortunately the haybine wasn't attached to the tractor anymore so I had to wait for Herbie to get home from work. Started cutting after 5pm. Started badly. You cannot drive forward without engaging the PTO as the blade digs into the ground, have to reverse. I found that out after I walked back to the house. OK. Need to back up, clear the blade, then re-engage the PTO and see if the blade is moving freely and the haybine is no longer smoking. Back out in the field, lean onto the right side of the haybine, reaching down into the blade area. Chock full of yucky, black, gooey rotten grass from previous cuttings. Went around to the tractor side, climbed up onto the baler then carefully slid my left foot down the one side of the rollers, standing on the part above the blade between the rake tines, then moved my right foot down to the ground, straddling the rollers so that I could reach far enough down to clean the gunk out and free the blade. Had to shout at Anni as she climbed under the haybine to catch the cuttings I was throwing out. Like she does when I used to clear the sickle-mower blade, like it's a game.
Went around the large part of the field, when taking a corner the rollers and blade continued moving, but the rake part stopped turning. Got off, cleaned it out again, reversed a few times, but it wouldn't turn. Tramped up to the house again. Herbie said one of the chains or bands must have come off, but I checked all of them - greasy hands and legs to prove it ! Gave up and came back inside. Tomorrow I'll try again, but it's possible that I've lost too much time before the next rains. Maybe I should just let the cows, horses and alpacas into the hayfield.
Have an appointment with the ortho guy on Thursday. Hopefully he can fix my arm without it costing too much and not with too much more down-time. Would be great to be functioning at 100% again.
Forgot about the re-set button on the instant water heater until Herbie asked if I'd checked it when I told him that I didn't have hot water down there anymore. Dolly has taken to bellowing when I leave her in the lower barn enclosure. Thought she was missing Boytjie, but now I'm not so sure as it's been 4 days since he left. But then she bellowed for days when I weaned her last calf, she bellowed when Milkshake died, so maybe she is still missing him. Making yoghurt with todays' milk. Not getting that much milk from her, so need to change things, feed and timing.
Well, bedtime for me. Goodnight.