Recently I have been helping Dad out with a few bits and bobs around the farm and in return he teaches me how to drive the tractor. This week for example I was helping Dad spread new bark chippings in the play areas. My driving is gradually improving and sometimes I am allowed to drive the tractor on my own and sometimes with Dad.
It was Sunday and I decided as I was awake in time that I would join the feed run. The children were all very young but they usually love to help Dad drive and I thought I would not get a turn. It was no surprise when Dad asked and a little boy put his hand up to drive. They weren’t very experienced so we doughnuted around the car park to the amusement of the parents before eventually Dad steered us towards the farm.
Clio was busy having fun in the chickens with the guests while Dad sent me back for a large screwdriver from his shed to make the boy piglets water go into a bigger trough as they were too stupid to work it out once Sally and her daughters had moved next door.
Then it was back to the tractor and Dad asked for a new volunteer to drive, Clio and I both said yes and rushed there, Dad said “it’s rare that Clio gets to drive, so she can have a go” I was very irritated because I had been helping Dad with his errands and missing the fun while she was catching chickens.
Clio looked very smug and drove the tractor all the way round the lake with Dad. I was unaware that Dad had something planned for me. I strolled off for a little doze in my favourite tree in protest.
Clio carried on with the guests feeding the other animals.
In my protest, I climbed down from my tree and headed over to the tractor, thinking that someone would volunteer to drive home and reserved a spot in the trailer but Dad asked if I wanted to drive. I thought this meant just on his knee as usual but he chucked me the keys, I slipped the gears into neutral, turned the engine on, moved into forward just as Dad had taught me and off I went! Mum was amazed and eager to capture me on video.
Dad asked me to stop by my bicycle so he could take over, but Clio ran ahead and took my bike home. I took this as the OK to follow with the tractor and trailer. You can just see Clio racing ahead in Mums video.
Mum was amazed at how I knew how to take the corners wide with the trailer on the back and how to start it up. I don’t think she knows how much I have been learning with Dad out on the farm.
The guests seemed very happy with my driving and came with Clio and me up to see the rabbits (I forgave Clio by now)
I hope Dad will let me drive the feed run trailer again. In fact may be one day I can run the entire feed run, though I will need to go into negotiation with Dad over my wages first!
“Tales from the farmers wife” shares life on our lovely holiday farm with Farmer Nick and our 6 children. Step into our beautiful 30 acres and experience nature close up with farming and educational crafts in stunning North Cornwall. Family, fun and adventure start here.