This past week I watched as a farmer harvest his soybean crop in the neighboring field. I grabbed my camera and took a video as he roared past me, kicking up the usual intense dust storm, which always comes out of a soybean harvest.
The grey heavy dust had me coughing and teary eyed, I made a fruitless attempt to blink away the haze and itch behind my eyelids.
As I watched, twigs and rocks spray back onto the shaved off field. The harvester moved slowly, roaring past me.
Holding the camera in my right hand I waved with my left and the farmer waved back. I could barely see him between the dust and the darkness inside the cab.
Vibrations from the massive John Deere Harvester rippled under my feet. The tractor’s size and close proximity, passing a few feet/meters in front of me- reminded me of a charging elephant in a Tarzan movie.
Add in a sunset and lengthening shadows. Then toss in a thick, grey swirling dust cloud that quickly encompassed the world.
I could feel the hair rise on my neck. This scene had an eerie feel…
I kept thinking something bad was about to happen.
Guess I’ve been watching too many horror movies…? Too close to Halloween..?
Uriah kept rolling his eyes and pacing. Finally, he gave up trying to get me to move away from the fence and walked back to the house. Smart dog!
From across the field, on the end of ‘Bob’s’ property, I saw a flicker of light.
I headed up on the deck to get a better view. I saw flames shooting up illuminating an old Oak tree that sat at the backend of his property. Not quite on ‘Bob’s’ land. It belongs to the farmer.
I haven’t lit a fire for a couple of months.
This summer’s air may have water soaked, but the ground and foliage has been very, very dry. Dangerously dry!
I watched the flames licking at the lower tree branches and then blazed higher. Orange, red and yellow flames reached up into the branches, so bright I could make out each limb. I was positive that tree was toast!
About fifty feet, to the north, is a cornfield. A very dry, not yet harvested- cornfield.
The farmer’s tractor’s lights glowed white; I noticed a second tractor in that field. I have never seen a soybean field stripped that fast. I wondered, if they were worried that fire?
When I couldn’t stand on the deck and breathe, I headed inside.
By midnight the air had cleared.
The fire was out, it hadn’t spread. (Add sigh of relief here)
Still today I am wondering, “What was that guy thinking- lighting a fire when a field was being harvested?”
Any thoughts on this?