The following is an old post that I never published, followed by today's happenings.
I'm pretty excited! I ran the loader, with Randy standing in the bucket with a chainsaw. (I know, he is a very brave man) He trimmed a bunch of dead branches out of our trees. The last time I ran the loader, I could not understand Randy's hand signals and almost dumped him out of the bucket. He got really mad. I got really frustrated, and then mad, and was very tempted to dump him out and go to the house. This time we had an in-depth discussion of his hand signals BEFORE I got in the driver's seat. I still say the lever should go forward for UP and backward for DOWN. But that is not how any equipment runs, I'm told. I have a terrible time with directions! When Randy finally noticed that I couldn't remember which way to push the levers, he changed his hand signals to help me. Kind of fun running that big thing. Maybe someday I'll figure out the crazy gears on the tractor. I almost pinned Randy between it and the fence with it many years ago. He really overestimates my ranch wife abilities!
So, it's the last day of my Christmas Break (to all of you who don't get a Christmas Break, I apologize) and I am doing some serious cooking. Two pans of lasagna (one for lunch and one for the freezer) a crock pot full of ham and bean soup, etc. I was chopping an onion when Randy showed up to ask if I would run the loader so he could trim some trims. We are selling calves today and he wanted to trim the trees along the driveway so the semi truck would not get tangled up in the overhanging branches. So, I put my cooking aside and grabbed a coat and shoes and hopped in the big loader. A quick refresher course on brake versus gas pedal (very important), forward, reverse, bucket tilting lever versus bucket raising and lowering lever (also very important) and off we go. I have to say it went pretty well today. Not once did I see him grab on to the bucket with a look of sheer terror on his face. My loader skills are improving! Only one miscommunication. At one point, Randy pointed (in my opinion) half up/half reverse. Basically, his finger was at a 45 degree angle. Hmmm, I thought, does he mean move the bucket up, or move the entire loader backward? I guessed up. WRONG! Next, of course I see the hand signal for stop, quickly followed by a rapidly repeating signal for up. We got all the trees trimmed and I got the loader safely parked. I have to say that is a pretty neat machine! It's not a job I mind anymore. You see, I've finally realized that when Randy gets irritated, it's nothing personal. It's just the nature of the job. It's not about how he feels about me at all. It's about getting the job done. Sometimes the worst part of helping is the fact that there is down time and I get bored. I am a daydreamer and it's a little embarrassing when I finally look up and Randy has that look on his face. Sometimes he even has his arms crossed. Oops.