Ag-Grow, etc….

Ag-Grow is a huge agricultural show that occurs in Emerald every year. If you want to buy or sell livestock, trucks, farming equipment, or just shop the booths for saddlery, hats, or tools, this is the place for you. This was my first time, so I’m glad I had a friend to show me around. I would’ve gotten lost, in the process of getting sunstroke, in the brilliant sunshine.

Of course, because it was supposed to be quite warm, I went in shorts and flip-flops, though many people were there in their boots, jeans, and plaid shirts. Though I think they wear those clothes because the show has a very country feel to it, it would’ve been smart for me to wear sneakers, as the first thing I did when getting out of the car, was to get stabbed by a very sharp weed, and have to “surgically” remove a very large thorn. The field we were parked in looked like it’d been bushwhacked, just recently, but I had no idea weeds could be so sharp or hurt so much.

Anyway, after “surgery” with nail clippers, we began to go up and down the rows, seeing all there was to see. There were just as many tractors and farming equipment as at the Emerald Show, if not more. In addition, lots of big trucks, though whether on sale or just on display, I’m not sure. No sign of Optimus Prime, though. Sad, I know.

One of the first things we saw were riders on horseback, where they were preparing the horses for auction. I do not know much about horses, and kept thinking of a certain “horse” person that I know back home. She’d have been in heaven, wandering among the horses and horse gear, here in Australia.

The sun continued to beat down on our heads, so we kept ducking into booths and stalls, every chance we got, to get out of the heat. We had to get some licorice, of course, and I tried another “rope” of sour licorice, filled with some kind of cream. They have every flavor under the sun, it seems.

I had told several of my friends that I needed to get an Akubra hat, before I headed home. I could not come to Australia and not come home with the iconic hat. Only, it comes in so many styles that I knew I’d have to try on quite a few to find the right one, and I needed to make sure I had a trusted friend with me when I was looking. I needed a second opinion, and not one from a sales person, or one of my kids.

So, first big hat stall that we went into which sold Akubras, and I started trying them on. I hadn’t originally thought that I’d find one that day, but I did. Some of them sat way too high on my head, but once I picked up The Boss style, I had a winner. Or so I thought, but my friend agreed with me. It was so fun. And when I come back to the U.S., I’ll be either wearing it or carrying it in my lap, because it sure ain’t goin’ in my suitcase.   : )

From there, we went to get some lunch, and I was recommended to try the Steak Works Burger. I wasn’t sure what to expect, though I knew it had bacon and pineapple on it. I also tend to forget that if a burger says it has steak on it, it actually means steak, whereas I tend to think it’ll be a higher quality hamburger. Also, I keep forgetting that their bacon is different than ours. So, my burger came with a sunny-side-up egg, bacon, lettuce, steak, pineapple, cucumber, tomato, and beets on the bun. Yeah, I know. As my friend stated, you can’t eat it delicately… or was it with decorum? You can’t eat it without opening your mouth as wide as possible, and probably making a mess. How about that? Then again, the same goes for a Red Robin burger, back home.

It was good. I don’t think I’d go out of my way to have it again, but it was good. The pictures almost make it look gross, but I didn’t have time to get the lighting perfect, so the egg looks quite prominent, but I barely tasted that part of it. I had to remove the tomato, beet, and cucumber, of course. And they call them beetroots, over here.

Some more wandering commenced, including visiting the auction, where we watched bulls being auctioned. Having been warned, I was very careful to not do anything that even slightly resembled raising my hand, so that I wouldn’t accidentally bid on a $3,000 bull. They had a guy or two spread around the fence, to keep an eye on the audience, and the one closest to us, I saw him glance at us, and was afraid I might accidentally nod or blink or something. Then I remembered that I had sunglasses on, so he couldn’t see any eye movement. We didn’t stay long, though. Too dangerous. I definitely had no intention of shipping a bull home to the U.S.

After some more baking in the sun, we headed home, having enjoyed ourselves tremendously.

And then, I got home, and things got really interesting. The second I walked in the front door, our house cleaner told me that the pony was missing. My brain was a bit fried, I had to think a bit. Scully was missing? He had an entire fenced in field to “play” in, how could he be missing? The neighbors had come over to tell someone that Scully had gotten out, so she went and looked, and they were right. So, I went and looked, and they were right. Where and why does a pony wander off, and where does he go, then? This is the same animal that nearly died a few weeks ago, from a wire cut that reached his stomach. Crazy animal.

I called Mr. B, and he planned to come home from Ag-Grow, as soon as possible, in order to take a look around before dark. So, we got about our business, and I went outside to hang up laundry. After a while, I went back inside to get my other laundry basket, and headed for the stairs. Just glancing out the front door, at the base of the steps, I watched as Scully meandered through the gate, into the front yard. While I made the call to let the family know he had returned, he was hungry enough to start eating the flowers in the ceramic planters. And I was unable to tell them where he went.

It was decided that I would let Belle (the dog) out of her pen, and lead Scully into it, using some hay. Sounds easy, right? I opened the pen, and Belle ran in and out, unsure of what was going on, and scaring Scully into backing off. While I hollered at Belle, she got out of my way, and Scully came into the pen, and then Belle followed. So, I had both of them in the pen, with Scully too close to the gate. If Belle went that way, she’d either spook the pony or Scully would run off. And a pony may be smaller than a horse, but I still have no intention of getting kicked by one.

I finally got Scully to take a few steps further in, towards the hay I was waving at him, while intermittently hollering at the dog, who kept trying to leap up on me, while he barked at the pony. During the whole fiasco, which really didn’t take that long, Dusty the cat was perched on one of the fence posts, watching the excitement like this was the best entertainment ever invented. Then, I tried to convince Belle to stop herd Scully from outside of the fence, and prayed Belle didn’t go after any of the chooks, while still in excitement mode. This IS the same dog that playfully ripped half the feathers out of Lucy the chook, last week.

I went back to my laundry, praying that nothing else went wrong with the animals, and looking forward to the State of Origin game. That would be decidedly more peaceful, I’m sure. There would be plenty of yelling, sure, but at least we don’t mean anybody harm by it.  : )

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