Maggie at the Farm by Susan Heydon

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Maggie has always been a town dog. This year she had the opportunity to travel with us out to a farm where friends had allowed us to use part of an old barnyard to grow crops. Since our in-town lot is fairly shady, growing veggies was not an option. Oh and I better clarify I also need room for my perennials. Vegetables came in a very, very, very distant second. Over evening coffee with these two gentlemen my husband often complained that he had no fresh tomatoes, hence the offer of a vegetable plot.

So one fine spring day, out the three of us went. Tools, check, yardstick, check, string line, check, Maggie check!! All accounted for. Tray of plants, check. We’re off. We told Maggie we were going to the farm. From the time we turned off onto the side road she was in overdrive. It must have been like the feeling you get when you go into a bakery, those smells, heaven. I think Maggie felt the same way only her smells were quite different. We turned into the driveway and she was almost in melt down. Stopped, opened her door and she quite literally fell over herself. She didn’t know what to check out first!!! Running here , sniffing there, change direction, quick hello to our friends and off she would go again. . Honestly I think she could have turned on a dime. Her senses must have been reeling. Nose to the ground she was in heaven. She accepted Bill and Carl as part of the whole adventure. It was a perfect match. She had never met our friends before. Bachelor brothers who had spent their whole lives farming. As kids they had always had a dog around. Maggie was now officially the new “farm” dog. They are the best of buddies and she can’t wait to get out to the property.


I think the space also astounded her. Nothing but open fields, the sound of the wind in the trees and limitless blue skies. I know how soul satisfying all of this can be. I?m sure it?s the same for animals. That initial euphoria is wonderful.

We all traipsed out to the barnyard to make a start. Maggie in the lead. She finally ran out of steam and lay and watched us begin the fine art of planting. As some of you may remember from previous stories I grew up on a farm so was no stranger to planting a garden. On the other hand my husband was diffidently a ?townie?. The ?boys? had already rototilled the ground so I started measuring and marking. Once the rows were set I took my trusty trowel and started planting tomatoes. Little did I realize that my husband had bought two ?flats?. That equates to about 48 plants.!!! No way would we ever need that many tomatoes, unless you had a Campbell?s contract which of course we didn’t. “Oh and by the way”, says Bill, “I picked up a few packages of seeds. Oh and also some onion sets. On I planted row after row! By the time we were done we also had planted 2 rows of green and yellow beans, 2 rows of radishes, 3 rows of lettuce, 2 rows of onions, 2 rows of beets and of course all those tomato plants. I was exhausted. I didn’t think I would be able to straighten up. Oh dear, now here is a dilemma. Had anyone given a thought to how we would get water to this garden?

To be continued.


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