Many of you will remember my Old Red Dragon...
It was a beast of a tractor and a real workhorse, but it had it's problems. I worked around its issues for a lot of years, but it finally got to a point where I knew a massive meltdown was looming in our future. After one particularly epic two week battle to complete what should have been a minor repair, I said enough and sold it. I sold it cheap, but consoled myself with the knowledge that I had avoided the major implosion I knew was on the horizon. The better part of valor and all that.
I still need a tractor to keep up with everything around here though so the search began to find a new dragon to help out with farm maintenance. I can't even begin to tell you all the twists and turns that went into finding a new tractor and the final result still has me scratching my head and pondering the mysterious ways of the world.
One of the stops along the path was this little Ford 3000....
It ran great, but it too had its issues. In particular, it had steering and hydraulic problems. It took massive amounts of brute strength to make it go in anything other than a straight line and would not hold the mower up while it was running, which meant I had to keep one had on the hydraulic lever and try to steer with the other. After 30 minutes of mowing, my mangled shoulder would be seized up, my hands would be numb and I would have exhausted an entire month's quota of swear words.
Dragons will do that to you.
This dragon and I did not get along so, I put it up for sale. And waited. And waited. And re-posted it. And waited. I waited all summer and had pretty much resigned myself to shipping it to an auction and taking my chances. I was about to delete the sale posting and, instead, my finger went to the the renew button all by itself.
The next morning, a guy called me up and bought it - just like that.
Dragons are unpredictable.
This is where Ben and hoof trimming comes in. Yes Ben, definitely NOT a dragon....
It turns out that Ben's last person is a tractor mechanic. I was over at his place working on trimming hooves and I asked him to keep an eye out for a tractor for me. A few days later he called me up and asked if I really wanted a new tractor. A friend of his had passed away last year and his son had gotten in touch about selling his father's tractor and was I interested?
And that is a very brief, very annotated version of how two years of tractor drama, mammoth donkeys and farrier work all came together in a mysterious, cosmic, mish-mash of happenstance and mechanical battles that would put St. George to shame to plunk this pretty blue dragon onto my farm.
Isn't she beautiful? Eat you heart out St. George.