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September 22, 2019: A Conversation with Tyra

The following conversation took place as I was working on my project, putting compost and grass on top of cardboard. I was working down by the gate. All the horses were out. Tyra (presumably) came over to see what I was doing.

Tyra: Whatcha doing?
Alys: Spreading compost and grass seed on top of cardboard.
Tyra: Why are you doing this?
Alys: Because this will keep the weeds down and help the grass grow.
Tyra: You don’t say.
Alys: I do say.
Tyra: You do some strange things around here.
Alys: You think so.

Bill working at the state fair

Tyra: I know so.
Alys: What’s strange?
Tyra: You put our manure in five gallon buckets at least three times a day. Then you put the buckets at the edge of the driveway.
Alys: Would you prefer that I leave it in the pen?
Tyra: No. But even odder is the fact that that guy comes around, the one driving the old pickup truck – he loads up his truck bed and drives off with the buckets.
Alys: And he then brings the buckets back.
Tyra: That’s right.
Alys: That’s my friend Bill.
Tyra: Sometimes he comes in quietly, when you are up at the house – and he does not say hello to you.
Alys: That’s just his way.
Tyra: And then he gets in his truck and drives off. He doesn’t say hello to us.
Alys: He doesn’t have the horse gene.
Tyra: What does he do with the manure?
Alys: Remember when we were coming home from our trip? We passed an area outside of Sutton, on the Matanuska River – there was a long stretch of grass and a long stretch of manure. Bill, he’s been taking your poop and dumping it there so as to grow grass and keep cars and trucks from parking in that area across from his house.
Tyra: I thought it was our manure – I mean, it smelled to me like our manure – hard to tell, we were going so fast.
Alys: Someday, if you like, we’ll go back there and check it out.
Tyra: No need to do this. I believe you.
Alys: Well, I’m sort of doing the same thing here, but with composted manure.
Tyra: What do you mean, compost?
Alys: Compost is a soil amendment. It consists of greens and browns and house scraps, all of which have been heated so as to destroy the weed seeds.
Tyra: I sort of get it. You put the organic matter in the shed and Pete turns it with the tractor, and it heats up and breaks down and becomes compost.
Alys: Yes. The blue tarp covered pile on your left – it is what I’m using in my plots.
Tyra: You know, this seems like a lot of work for very little return. I alone could eat everything in your grass plots in less than five minutes.
Alys: First of all, the grass will continue to grow after you graze. And secondly, I am planning on putting in lots and lots of plots.
Tyra: And that’s going to take a lot of time.
Alys: And cardboard and compost.
Tyra: Uhh huh.
Alys: Trust me, you are going to be in grazing heaven by the time I am done with this project.
Tyra: You aren’t shitting me, are you?
Alys: No Tyra, I’m not shitting you.

Next: 263. 9/23/19: And When You can’t Find Something
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