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You can find me in the hay truck, the old one, hauling in bales of straw. Yes, we needed to make hay, the offspring cut, raked and baled it and it was overripe so we mostly have straw. Ain't it a quandary, not enough rain or too much rain? The weather isn't like the old Montgomery Ward's and we can't order what we want! The barns are filling up with that first cutting and the old hides will at least have something to gnaw on when the snow flies. Unless, and you know there is always the unless, we have a dry summer and have to start supplementing in August.

We have sure had lots of varmint activity around here at night. Old Dog is on the job and does the guard duty faithfully, barking at every flutter and bang. You would think the coyotes would clean out some of the extra critters but it appears the population of opossums, armadillos, coons and squirrels are all exploding. We find new holes dug almost daily to allow entry under the yard fence, and I can't figure why they want in the yard. There is no feed for anything and there is plenty of room around here other than the yard.

The cattle market is down and our steers are getting fat on high dollar grain. I know we ride the market regardless of the ups and downs in this business, but my banker and I suffer the bloodletting with great pain. My close relative and I are planning a trip to the feedlot as soon as possible. We may go broke paying for the feed, but I want to see the cattle. The sight of your steers getting close to 1,200 pounds, slick and healthy is about as close to beauty as I have ever seen. We have not lost any and they have stayed well and hungry.

I don't have much time to read the paper or watch the news this season of the year. I did hear that some country is threatening to take over the world again. I wonder if the thought has ever occurred to them that if they use the devastating bomb they are making, it will ruin the whole thing and them too. Reminds me of Wile E. Coyote chasing the Road Runner except it isn't comical. The border is still a mess and I know that without new information. I have no suggestions for cleaning it up but prayer is sure needed for all of the world and the folks struggling to live another day.

Living on the rock pile has its advantages. We are a couple of miles from the nearest neighbor and it is usually peaceful around here. But, the celebrating of Independence continues on. We don't mind, it is just a little shocking at the start of the noise, and the big booms are sorta fun to hear. Long live the memory of the rocket's red glare!

I am thankful for the waterholes being replenished and cleaned out, springs being refueled and wells topped off. The grass is thick and taller than a jackrabbit and the cattle are fat. So we will take a deep breath and enjoy today. I can complain better than most and have done more than my share of it over the hay situation but, fellers, I am blessed! I sure am fed and have a roof over my head, my family is healthy and I can still get around pretty darn good! What's in the future for me is not to be known until it gets here! Can't fix yesterday and I hope I learned something from the mistakes I made.

It is my opinion, and everyone has one, perfection is not to be had in this job. We raise cattle, a living and changing product that is a long-time investment and one of great pleasure but not, now or ever, close to perfection! The market being down may be the time to replenish your heifer numbers or buy a bull. Just roll with it and keep on smiling!

Bill is the pen name used by the Gravette area author of this weekly column. Opinions expressed are those of the author.

Editorial on 07/17/2019

Print Headline: Perfection is not to be had in this job

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