We are very lucky to have access to a constant supply of well-rotted horse manure. To achieve this I can thoroughly recommend widening your social circle to include farmers/stable owners. Don’t ask me how – all I can suggest is google it – someone may have written a more detailed action plan somewhere – you never know!
Anyways, the point of this blog is to tell you about how our ongoing love of horse manure helped me to overcome an anxiety provoking situation and even more than this, enabled me to walk away smiling and laughing.
So we get to manure mountain, which is situated off a busy lay-by with a cafe frequented by truckers and construction industry operatives – in other words a load of blokes.
In the yard several men were standing about apparently carrying out some construction – as there was a digger and a massive hole. The guy who owned the yard, who had said we can have as much of the ‘gardener’s gold’ as we needed, was not around. Beener, in her usual friendly and polite manner, shouted over hello and said that we were there to collect some manure.
It was then that we realised we had entered the twilight zone or perhaps gone back in time a few centuries..
There was no response- verbal or any other form of acknowledgement, – it seemed that we had become invisible.. How strange though because it looks like they are looking right at us – you could go so far as to say they were blatantly gawping at us…
We grabbed our shovels and I immediately suggested to Beener that we should get the manure from the back of the mound as this was particularly well rotted. Completely coincidentally, this also happened to shield us from the intense glares, stares and gawps.
As we filled up our one tonne builders bag, we realised that to drag it back over lumps and bumps to the cars would not be a very gracious performance for our captivated and uninvited audience. So we dragged the bag back to the car and heaved it into the boot of Beener’s car. Ensuring that we showed no signs of physical exertion as we did this – yes you lot we are two ladies shovelling muck and what’s more we’re perfectly capable of doing it too!!
We then carried on shovelling and took our time doing it, at one point stopping to have a brief chat and a joke. The whole situation was bizarre, as more blokes began to wander into the yard, joining the growing group watching us. As they blatantly stared, in a most unfriendly manner, we blatantly ignored them, in a very ‘give a manure’ manner.
We didn’t get as much manure as we had planned, as we were both fairly keen to get away – we were perhaps there for 15 minutes.
As we drove out of the yard, feeling triumphant that we had not let them intimidate us, Beener said to me: ‘For god’s sake, haven’t they ever seen two ladies shovelling s**t before’. Apparently not … or at least not in real life…
To all those women who work in the construction industry or other traditional male, manual type sectors – I can only imagine the manure you must have to put up with on a daily basis – fair play to you and good luck.