The Hydrant In The Pasture

After nearly nine years of marriage, I am totally convinced that my husband Jackie can repair, fabricate and do just about anything. The man never ceases to amaze me and he has taught me how to do many things over the years. I myself come from a family in which the men were not particularly mechanical or skilled in any sort of home repairs and maintenance. My grandpa Frank took care of plumbing repairs with black electrical tape and believed you didn't add oil to a car until the dipstick was bone dry. So when I left home I was to say the very least, totally unprepared to maintain a home or vehicle and it to this day amazes me how little knowledge I have gained over the years. Nothing illustrates this better than the time the horses broke off one of two hydrants in the pasture when I lived on my farm.

It was a one of those beautiful summer mornings where you just feel extra happy and you know nothing could possibly go wrong. I made my way to the barn for morning chores and after gathering all the horses in for feeding, I headed out to the pasture to fill the water troughs. After I had the first successfully filled I headed towards the second to fill it. As I made my way closer to the trough something didn't look right but I wasn't wearing my glasses so my eyesight could not be trusted, or so that is what I tried to tell myself. But that only worked for a few more steps because the closer I got the more obvious it became that I had a big, gushing problem. It seems as though the horses decided that the pasture was in dire need of a water fountain and the best way to obtain one was to break the water hydrant off at the ground.

I just stood there and looked at the water streaming up into the sky and watched as it fell back to the ground where it had made a mud hole, the likes of which I had never seen. I would have cried but I was having one of those moments where you are in such disbelief that your mind blanks out and you don't know what your supposed to do next. Thankfully the wind blew and a cool shower of water brought me to my senses and while I didn't have a plan, I did have the presence of mind to shut the water off at the meter. Now that the fountain was disengaged, I stood there and accessed the situation and while doing so it occurred to me that I hadn't a clue as to how to go about repairing the hydrant. Nothing was not an option. So I weighed my options; I could either stand there wallowing in self pity and cry like a girl, or I could commence digging and start praying for God to guide me. So I got a shovel and started to dig, and I dug and then I dug some more. Finally I arrived at the spot where the repair needed to be made. It was at this point I decided that one trough was plenty and in order to avert any similar disasters in the future I would cap off the water line rather than replace the hydrant.

By this time I was caked in mud from head to toe and I needed to get to the hardware store. Now under normal circumstances I would be mortified to go to town in my present state, but this was not normal circumstances and I was not about to drag all that mud into my house. So I found some old towels in the barn to lay on the seat of my truck, sucked up my foolish pride and headed into town. Normally the hardware store was empty during the middle of the day, but wouldn't you know that on this day the store would be full of customers and of course not one of them was a woman. Oh, they were full of questions as to the whys and wherefores of me being caked with mud and they all had plenty of advice as to how I should go about fixing the problem and why they were all awful sorry for my trouble, you know not a one of them offered to help with the repair. But hey, I had the hard part done and I didn't need or want their help.

Things turned out well. I made it back home and finished the repair which actually turned out to be relatively simple. But that is how it often is with life, we make things so much more difficult than they need to be by giving in to fear and self pity and allowing ourselves to feel overwhelmed. Only when I took a deep breath and turned my focus upwards and prayed for the only guidance and help I needed was I able to fix the issue at hand.

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Until we meet here again, I pray God bless you and keep your loved ones safe.