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amish barn raising in 2017  RSS feed

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The Amish said Maine was the last place they really wanted to come because of our thin soil and short growing seasons, but a few years ago they arrived nonetheless. I have no issue with them, and they routinely borrow my tractor.

Still the first year of their arrival here, paper work was not done and they did not arrive until fall. Now they were up against it; a Maine winter coming in and no hay in the barns. But that October we got blessed with an excellent stretch of weather, so they borrowed my neighbor's tractor, and as they were haying something let go in the transmission. The tractor, baler and wagon went down the hill, through a rock wall, out into a swamp, hit a tree and literally broke in half.

They went back to their houses, put on their Sunday best and went to see my neighbor who lent them his tractor. They told him what happened and said, "As we speak, we are getting teams of horses together and will pull the tractor out of the swamp, and will get it fixed as soon as the parts come in."

The farmer just shook his head and said, "Never mind that tractor, what you need to do is borrow my other tractor, and finish your haying while the weather is good You have all winter to fix the broken one."

My Amish neighbor said that after they were told that, they knew they had moved to a good area.

The Amish were not wrong in what they did, they meant to fix what was broken, but they never realized us farmers that have been here for a few centuries know what it is like to not have enough hay for the winter. What is a broken tractor among neighbors?
paul wheaton
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Location: missoula, montana (zone 4)
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