Submitted by Kaare Askildt, former Preeceville area farmer in training. This is the third of a series on getting settled in Hazel Dell.
Spring, the time for farm auctions. We went to a couple.
At the first one I went alone and I was looking at some round bale feeders, but they went for more than I promised my wife to spend. The big equipment was sold, some higher than expected and some at bargain basement deals. I got caught up in the “auction frenzy” and when they were auctioning off a stack of OSB boards, plywood and panel boards, I was at the ready! This was something that we need for our new farm, as we are adding to the barn.
The auctioneer started asking for bids, and finally somebody made a starting bid. I put up my hand as I wanted this. Son of a gun! There are others that want these boards as well! Well, they are not going to outbid me! I won! I won! Then I started to load the boards, and found that some of them were well used, and in the middle of the bundle were some half boards and some with large sections cut out of them. Oh well, I’m sure I got them at a bargain! When I came home, I proudly showed the treasure to my wife, who picked a flyer from a lumber yard and pointed out that I had paid more than double the cost for new boards for these old beat up boards! Lesson learned: Keep my hands in my pockets while at an auction, or bring my wife along!
The second auction my wife and I attended together and she kept me from doing anything foolish. However, I was pleased to see that there are others that get caught in the bidding frenzy as well. A piece of used equipment went for about $2,000 higher than the farmer paid for it two years ago! I know this because I was bidding on that very same piece of equipment when he bought it!
We have a non-paying tenant underneath the crawl space in the old section of our house. It’s a woodchuck and I’ll call him Charlie or Chuck for short. After moving a big flower pot that was left behind by the previous owner, we found the main entrance to Chuck’s abode, its right beside our front door! Then walking around our house, we found a couple of exits. Now the question is what to do about it? Chuck is ignoring any attempt to communicate with him; he’s ignoring our eviction notice, so we may have to resort to evict him and a possible family by force. We have a call in to the rodent control officer in our area. Hopefully he might have some ideas of how to get rid of Chuck!
In the spring many years ago on Ole and Lena’s farm near Preeceville, their only bull took sick and died. They needed to go to the livestock auction to buy a new one. Ole had to get the crops in and couldn’t leave the farm, so Lena took the train to Yorkton to buy a bull. If she was successful, she would take the train back to Preeceville, and she and Ole would drive to Yorkton with the truck to pick up the new bull.
The bidding was furious at the spring livestock auction, and Lena found herself bidding on the last remaining bull. She got the bull, but it totally drained her cash. All she had left was ten cents. Unfortunately the train fare to Preeceville was fifty cents. “Pleeze Mr. Konduktor, kud you make an exception yust dis once?” pleaded Lena. “Sorry lady,” replied the conductor, “but you can send your husband a telegram asking him to come and get you. The telegram office is just down the street!”
At the telegram office Lena asked: “Mister, hov many vords kan I send to Ole for a dime?” “It’s ten cents a word,” answered the clerk. Lena pondered for a while, then finally said: “OK, here is da message: COMFORTABLE!”