Tuesday, January 03, 2012

If Only They Could See Me Now....

I had one of those days today that just had to make me laugh. I had no choice. one of those moments that make you look at yourself from the outside in, and think, please, somebody, hide me...

As I was standing in the grocery store with a drugstore bag full of sedatives, arms loaded with three boxes of frozen pizza, and not enough money to pay for any of it, I was thinking....

Please, Lord, don't let people think I am really this person!

And I'm not. I'm a well-adjusted, happy, self-fulfilled individual. I am currently living in a place I want to live in, with a Beagle who brings me joy every day. I am in a committed, loving relationship with an individual who makes my heart smile on a daily basis. And I have my own television.

I just happen to also suffer from the occasional panic attack or bout of insomnia, and these issues, from time to time, require pharmaceutical intervention.

I also have a penchant for frozen pizza, and as a result of this, when it goes on sale, I buy armloads and armloads of it.

As a result of all this, times do pop up in life when I need to stock up on both pharmaceuticals and frozen pizza ....

And I'm entirely comfortable with that.

I was just really, really happy that as I was standing there with my drugs and my pizza that the girls who made fun of me in high school didn't happen to waltz into the store at that very moment.

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Friday, December 30, 2011

Cow's Hill? What?

After a lifetime of residency in a lovely town called CowTown, I have moved.

Life is full of ups and downs, and my life is no exception.

I have spent the last two months moving to a new location: I live in a tiny bungalow in a town about fourteen kilometres South of my beloved Ranch.

I am now officially a resident of Cow's Hill instead of CowTown.

The choice to move was a difficult one. Do I want to leave the security of home? Do I want to strike out on my own? Do I want to be responsible for filling up my own windshield washer fluid? (Something my father has done for me for the past four years!) Do I want to come home every day to myself and no one but myself?

Well, no. I don't want that. I don't want to come home to an empty house.

So a condition of my moving was that I bring my eleven and a half year old Beagle with me.

Dixie initially had mixed reactions about the move. So did everyone who knew her. People thought that moving Dixie after years of her having the whole run of all of CowTown would kill her. Dixie was initially anxious about her new home. (As was I). However, after about a week, she realized that her new house came with pizza, treats, and the full rin of the couch.

Since then, she has gained weight, gained shine, and gained a love for sleeping in bed with a person. I have never seen Dixie as happy as I have seen her these past months.

In my new home, I have no phone, no television, and no Internet.

Sometimes people ask me how I live. Once, a person even referred to me as "a Pioneer". I mean, realistically, I live in a house insulated with straw. I have no internet, no phone, and no cable. I also happen to milk cows in my spare time.

So perhaps I may just be like a pioneer.

Only, I'm the type who comes with a Chevrolet Cruze and an Iphone.

I'm going to make it a point to blog at least once a week because I love my blog and I love my readers. The problem lies with the fact that I must blog via an Iphone, because in my new house in Cow's Hill, I have no Internet.

But my Beagle and I do have happiness, and that is the most important thing.

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Sunday, October 02, 2011

Where Have You Been?

The beginning of the best summer of my life started, as you have read, with tears. I was crying, I was hysterical. I had nowhere to go and nowhere to turn because I had hit a financial rock bottom. I've worked hard all my life, and people who work hard don't hit financial ruin, now do they?

But I did.

In an attempt to take my mind off this financial ruin, I began milking cows in my spare time. Because apparently a degree in Sociology won't do it for a person and sometimes you have to go back to where you started out in order to figure out where you really need to go.

And there I was, working my butt off, covered in sweat, dirty like I've never been dirty before in my life. I've been tromped on, shoved around, kicked by the hooves of a thousand Holsteins. I've been given eye infections, hand infections, arm rashes, and the odd back ache.

The first time I milked with The Farner, I about died. Would he judge my sweaty grossness? Would he judge my technique? What would we talk about? What if I dropped the dip cup? What if I killed one of his cows?

And I guess he was thinking the same thing because the pair of us became such a couple of bumbling idiots that the first several times we milked together, cows got loose and other cows were neglected; dip cups were dropped and we bumped into each other; I had debris on my face and he had debris on his face and neither of us could muster the courage to mention to the other that this debris existed at all.

The entire months of May and June passed us by and he finally asked me if I would go to fireworks with him on the first of July. Several awkward and strange dates were to follow before we played out the first verse of this song in our own strange, shy kind of way.

The rest of our summer was played out in much the same fashion. There has been a cheesy country song to match just about every one of our dates, including the one where I spent the entire time sitting on the tire of a Hesston 6550 in the field behind the barn. Or the one where we sat out on the riverbank watching shooting stars until two in the morning. Or the other one, where we climbed up in the hay mow and I screamed when a spider the size of my head descended inches from my face.

Saturday morning crop walks have become the highlight of my week, where we walk with my hand in his enormous, farmer-y, calloused one to see if things are ready to be harvested or not. At first I thought these walks were just a ploy to spend time with me. How sweet! But it turns out, this is actually a part of the process of farming. I routinely get asked to walk about four hundred metres into a field of corn and bring him back a few ears. (Because corn does not come in pods. It comes in ears. Peas come in pods and farmers get cranky when their equipment breaks down and their pods of peas go bad, but that is another entry altogether.)

The weather has cooled down some now. We spend more of our time in the grain room, on a makeshift couch made of feed bags. We talk every day after milking, about the things that don't really matter. Occasionally, we talk about the things that really do matter.

I've spent the end of summer begging the end not to come, but I can't really control the seasons. There are vast differences between this fall and the last two I've faced and despite my crankiness at the change in the weather I'm looking forward to every next day.

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Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Well, It Took Some Time...

I managed to stop crying over my financial situation and I am now actively pursuing solutions. I'm not sure what those solutions are but there has to be one out there somewhere.

I'm getting my tires changed today which has been a source of anxiety since before spring began. The tires I managed to get with my car are perhaps the sexiest tires I've owned in my life. I've been upset that I've been driving on them all this time in the good weather (which is laughable to say because the weather here has been anything but good) an perhaps destroying some of their sexiness.

But I just have not had the seventy bucks to get them changed over. Where do you ge seventy dollars where seventy dollars does not exist?

Where do you get nine hundred dollars where the nine hundred dollars does not exist?

And how on Earth am I going to deal with taxes next year?

I was discussing this with a friend over the weekend, like, what if I just don't pay? What will they do to me? Is there a way for me to prove that I simply don't have the money? If I do that, will they let me off the hook?

Will they send me to jail? Is that an option? Because, I'll totally go. I'm willing to do some jail time in return for money I don't have. I mean, lots of people can do weekend sentences for all kinds of crimes, right? Why not let me take advantage of this?

My friend doesn't think jail time is an option.

Neither does my mother.

When I finally do get around to calling the tax people about the money I owe them, you can bet your ass I'm gonna ask.


Monday, May 02, 2011

On Being Broke

Tax season has come and gone. I would usually choose to end this statement with some sort of other statement relating to how this has made me feel, but I will tell you a story instead.

Last year, I did my taxes. Mr. Tax Man gave me back almost five thousand dollars. I don't know if you've ever received five thousand dollars out of the woodwork before, but this is a mighty nice thing to get.

During that visit with Mr. Tax Man, he told me "If you make the same amount next year, you'll get close to the same return." I have since made it my goal to make the same amount as I made last year so that I could receive an additional five thousand dollars.

My new job leaves much to be desired in the way of finances, but I did work enough at other jobs over the year to compensate. I was hoping for an amount at least close to what I got last year. Like, within fifteen hundred dollars of what I got last year in the form of tax returns.

On Friday, I called my mother to see what my return would be and she told me I ended up oweing nine hundred dollars.

I did the only thing I could think of at that point and I went to my car and I wept until I thought I would throw up in my new car.

Through Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, I have continued on in much the same fashion. I've now gone to two different accountants and as a result of this?


I've been weeping to the point of convulsion. Three times on Saturday, while I was driving back and forth from the city, I almost had to stop my car. I haven't cried this hard over anything in a long time.

I am on the brink of financial ruin. If this financial ruin was due to my penchant for Starbucks and name brand blue jeans, I would blame myself. But over the past months as my financial reality has sunk in, I have completely cut out the extras in my life. I do not dine out, I severely limit my beer intake. I do not purchase clothing or makeup or go to movies. I've been over and over my bank statements and I can't think of anywhere to pinch any pennies.

I currently have two friends looking out for second jobs that I can take on.

Until then, I'm sitting on the couch trying to think of a way to come up with enough money to pay my bills.

I don't know what I'm going to do.


Saturday, April 23, 2011

Yep, I'm Gonna Talk About Plaid...

I am known in certain circles for my plaid jacket. I've been spending time in more agricultural circles lately and as a result, I'm just wearing a jacket instead of being that girl in the plaid jacket.

It is so, so freeing.

My original plaid jacket (And hot damn, I wish I had a picture) was a gift from the Berry Queen. She was about eight months pregnant with her fifth Berry Baby and angry about her size. She projected these feelings of size onto my birthday gift and as a result, she gifted me with a men's size XL plaid jacket. I loved that jacket, and as time went on, Mal grew to love it as well.

About three weeks ago, I decided to play the role of the good Samaritan. I was driving down the road and there was a woman standing beside a dog that had clearly been hit. I felt bad, swore up and down, and stopped my car.

The woman was also a good Samaritan because she hadn't even hit the dog. The person who hit the dog had driven away. The dog was still alive and was quite docile and quiet and I couldn't see anything visibly wrong with it. The woman went to question the two houses nearest us to no avail.

I decided to make a quick call to the vet's office (Three years of owning an accident prone horse taught me to keep the vet's number always at hand) and asked if we could bring the dog in.

I was standing on the side of the highway with an older woman who had her hair and makeup done and who was wearing heels and a nice outfit. I had no clue as to how to get the dog into her car.

I noticed that the dog was not bleeding or really even dirty at all, so I thought, I know! And I grabbed my plaid jacket, rolled the injured dog onto the jacket so that I could use it as a sling/stretcher. The dog was placed in the back of the car and driven to the vet's office.

Unfortunately, the injuries to the dog must not have really set in until he was transported. Upon getting to the vet's office, myself, my clothing, and my jacket were thoroughly coated with blood.

I fear the worst for the dog as he was in much worse shape when he got to the vet's than when I first saw him on the side of the road. The lady from the vet's office asked me if I wanted my jacket back and said that if I did, i would have to wait as they were working on the dog.

I left without my jacket and spent the rest of the day feeling terrible because someone's dog was hit on the road. I can't imagine how I would feel if my Dixie was hit in such a fashion.

Now my search for the next plaid jacket begins. It has to be a men's XL, it has to be the perfect flannel, it has to have the right color, and it has to be able to endure years of bonfires and other types of redneck debauchery.


Friday, April 15, 2011

Oh, Right... My Dating Hiatus...

Well, my dating hiatus began on December 21st. I am now roaring into month four with only a little bump in the road.

It was a small one.

And I was more enamored with that bump's tractors and cows than I was enamored with him, but hey, sometimes green tractors and big cows can get the best of a girl.

I simply can't be blamed for the affinity I have for tractors and riding on them in the moonlight with the person who owns them. You would have climbed right up as well. You know you would. Because the tractor was green and the cows needed to be fed and what girl can resist the words "Well, looks like we need to take a little tractor ride."

Luckily, this individual and I never went on a "date". So I'm still good with my dating hiatus. Had anything involved dinner and movies and hand holding and that sort of thing, I would be sunk.

All I did was milk some cows in the company of an individual who happened to own cows.

No dating.

Which is good, because if I had gone on any dates in the past four months, my beloved Joomy would be disappointed in me.

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