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Flick ([personal profile] flick) wrote2017-08-04 09:21 pm
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Hay ho...

The day before we went Up North for The Wedding, we were due to get our hay delivered. Shortly before we were expecting it, I got a text from the Hay Lady to say that they'd decided that they'd put it in their barn and bring it to us later.

This was somewhat ominous, as normally they don't have enough room in their barn for our hay. Mike has taken Jo up there the day before and when he came home he said "they've cut it and there's nothing there!", so I made a mental note to get it from her ASAP before someone came and offered lots of money for it: it's been a bad hay crop here, because it was so dry, so prices are going to be silly by the new year.

Today, she brought a trailer-load, which is a third of our order. As we were unloading it, she said words to the effect of "er, yeah, about the hay crop... I can do you one more trailer load but that's it". She's got half what she usually does, has already told her first-time customers that she can't do anything for them, and is trying to spread the pain around her long-standing people.

After she got home, she called a much larger-scale hay producer to see if he could help: he could, but wasn't very enthusiastic (he was 800 bales rather than his usual 1200 this year and, again, wanted to save it for his regulars) and so quoted a fairly silly price.

I had a vague memory that Mrs Farmer had mentioned having a good crop this year and, as luck would have it, she was blackberrying when we took Jo out for her walk. She did indeed have a good crop this year, and has about 500 spare bales. When we got back from our walk, we drove up there to get a test bale ("ooph, we won't need as many of *those* as we do of our usual supply!" I thought as I staggered to the car with it). The boys seemed happy enough to eat a handful of it this evening, although the real test will be tonight: GB has a haynet of Mrs Farmer's as well as a net of his usual.

The Hay Lady came over in the evening as well, and took a third of the bale away to try it on her horses. Based on looking at and sniffing it, though, she said that if the horses were happy then could we put her in touch with Mrs Farmer to, if Mrs Farmer would like, find homes for it all (as long as it's a reasonable price. I've got no idea what Mrs Farmer is going to charge us, and suspect I'll be bargaining her up rather than down).

It's not nearly as nice as our usual stuff but I'm hopeful that the boys will eat it as long as we give it to them while it's still fairly fresh. And hopefully all the rest of the Hay Lady's customers will be sorted out as well!

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