If It Ain’t Broke It Will Be

Farming is not for the faint of heart.

Oh sure, as you drive up the valley and see all those beautiful farms, crops growing, people happily hoeing, tractors making the rounds, it all seem so peaceful and idyllic.

There is a behind the scenes though.

All that machinery and the tractors that pull it can pose a mechanical nightmare for farmers. They will most likely blow a gasket when you need them the most. Farming is an occupation that consists of a lot of frustration tempered with an equal amount of patience. There are times, I’m sure, when all of us have wanted to burn it all down.(Metaphorically speaking of course).

What can go wrong will go wrong. That seems to be the motto here at Shaw Creek Farms these days. Spring has sprung, summer is almost upon us and we have been faced with one mechanical disaster after another this spring.


First it was the tractor. A behemoth of a machine. Needed for damn near every job on the farm. The doohickey that connects the whatsit to the thingamabob broke. That is about as technical as I get. When my husband talks to me about tractor parts I know I should be paying close attention but all I really hear is the teacher’s voice from Charlie Brown. After numerous calls to the John Deere dealer the doohickey was ordered and picked up, in Kamloops, by my son and me.


The rotavator was the next to go. We had two fields left to till when smoke started pouring out of it.  Never a good sign. The parts for this machine are so expensive they will be referred to in this paragraph by $$$$. Another call in to a different dealer followed by emails with photos and the $$$$ was ordered. We have to wait two weeks because, apparently these $$$$ have to come from the ends of the earth.


Next up, the fertilizer spreader. The thingy that wings the fertilizer out onto the ground disintegrated. Need a new one. Call in to John Deere again who then has to call Vicon, maker of said spreader. They then send it to John Deere, who then sends it to us. Thingy picked up and put back on. Spreader winging fertilizer again. But wait… not an hour later and here comes the tractor, backing the spreader into the shop. I know my husband is at the end of his rope because when I ask what’s wrong he silently points to the arm thingy that spins the wingy thingy. Off it comes and into the truck with it he goes. He’s not even calling the dealers now. He’s just heading straight to a neighbour’s farm to see what he’s got. Nope, the one the neighbour has is the wrong one. BUT WAIT. Up on the wall of the neighbour’s shop! There it is, hanging there. The part he needs! Praise be to Thor, God of tractor parts! (It’s got to be him right? He does carry a hammer.)


I really hope our run of bad luck is at an end.( I didn’t even mention the tractor tire that was one lug nut from falling off.) They say bad luck runs in threes. Ours just happen to be multiples of three. We’ll get there, the potatoes will get planted and they will be up out of the ground. Then this ‘springus horriblus’ will be but a memory.

In the meantime… patience.

*Michelle Beks is having a hard time getting anything done with her fingers crossed.