Thursday, August 18, 2011

barn envy

On our farm we do not have a barn. Up the street from us is a small bank barn and an older house, likely to be the original farmstead around here. Our house was built in 1949 and has an additional building, but it is not a barn.

Every week I drive to Carlisle, PA. I used to drive the interstates, but found that accidents and traffic jams were a constant source of stress. So I changed my drive to back roads, past many farms and small communities. For a portion of the drive I am beside the Yellow Breeches river..where there are trout fishermen, complete with the chest high waiders and wicker basket, casting for trout. A beautiful sight. And on really hot days, tubers and kayakers too.

I drive past many old farms, and get to see many barns. Some are beat up and looking like they are about to collapse, most have had tremendous upkeep. Since mid-May and the opening of Farmers On The Square I've seen new roofs installed, new siding applied, new paint. There is serious barn pride around here. Yesterday was a picture perfect day: white puffy clouds, brilliant blue skies, so on my drive over to Carlisle I took photos with my iphone from the car window. Not the camera operation to do these amazing structures justice, but here is a feel for what I get on my weekly "commute":

the detail in the brick work on the side of this barn is amazing..the tiny iphone lens does not quite capture it!
this one is the stonewall barn yard..this is a bank barn, the livestock was kept in stalls in the bottom, the top would hold hay. the barn yard for preparing animals to take them out to work.

and this one, with the barn doors open, shows the massive hay bales some farms make now. Beside are old silos. one missing a roof. The blue ones are commonly referred to as "bankruptcy tubes" around here..when a farmer bought that silo, changed their farming practices it usually resulted in bankruptcy for the farm.
Someone has to have this beautiful, traffic free drive to work, happy that it is me!

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