This weekend we visited my husband’s family in his hometown and part of our little adventure included me learning how to drive a big green John Deere Tractor. Me you say? Sounds crazy, I know, but honestly it was a lot of fun. His family owns a farm, which includes a pretty large pecan orchard. Before it’s time to harvest the nuts, the orchard has to be cleaned of any big limbs that have fallen off the trees and removed so machinery can come in to pick up the pecans later.
That’s where the tractor and I come in. Some of the limbs are too big and heavy to be loaded onto a truck (we’re talking big logs that look like trees themselves), so you need a big tractor with a lot of pulling power to drag them out of the orchard. It’s a two person job, and my husband was on the ground hooking the chains up to the limbs for the tractor to pull them and he needed me to drive. He showed me how, and it really wasn’t that much different than driving stick shift (only it was much taller and felt like a monster truck), except I learned the brakes do not stop it completely…lol.
After dragging our first big limb out of the orchard, my husband motioned for me to drag it over to another pile of limbs just outside of the orchard, which was fine, until he told me to push the rest of the limbs down with the front of the tractor. I shook my head no. All I could see was tipping over in the tractor (which has no airbags) and landing somewhere out in the field, the tractor on top of me. Well apparently, I underestimated the power of the tractor and by the end of the day, I was rolling over limbs and bushes with ease ( even taking joy in feeling them crushed under my monster tractor tires).
If you know me, you know I’m not particularly outdoorsy and you wouldn’t call me a farm girl, but if you need something done or give me a task, I’m going to go after it with everything I have (I’ve planted pecan trees in the middle of the winter in freezing temperatures to the surprise of my in-laws and I think my husband too). I liken myself a little to Scarlett O’Hara (not too much though, I’d like to think I’m a lot nicer), in that she could where fancy clothes, be prim and proper, but if the cotton needed picking or vegetables planted, she was out there without thinking twice. Besides, in a few more years I think my husband may turn me into a farm girl or at the very least a girl in her high heels driving a tractor around their gorgeous pecan orchard. 🙂