On Monday we took my car to our BMW specialists for a bit of an operation. Basically, a couple months after I bought it we realised it was losing oil - somehow, and it stunk really bad (think burnt popcorn, not particularly nice early in the morning!)
Not using it, not overheating, not leaking, so to speak - it was just disappearing. We took it for an (early) 100K service and they found it was due to a leaking valve and possibly a couple other related things. I didn't know it at the time, and I'm not sure if I've mentioned it before, but yet again I had to buy the car with the different engine - that just happens to be just that harder to get into and requires special tools, therefore creating a bigger job. Clever, no?
We knew it had to get sorted, so we got the quote for everything they could possibly think may need doing to fix the issue, and it came back pretty close to $3000. Although they did admit that they've added extra onto the quote because they honestly weren't sure and they didn't want to under-quote us. Due to the lack of work I've had over the past few months, I was grimacing a bit. My parents wanted it fixed ASAP though, so they offered to pay whatever I couldn't and I'd just pay them back. Thankfully though, we heard yesterday that some of the parts they thought might need replacing, actually looked OK, however they did have to replace a couple other little things - o-rings and such - that were much cheaper than the other part would've been. So it's quite possible that it's knocked the price down a thousand - thank goodness.
Back in the beginning when I said I was getting a BMW so many people kinda freaked out and told me I was an idiot. Yeah, sure the parts are expensive, just as they said. But hey, at least they're easy to source and they're good vehicles when they're running well. It wouldn't have been a problem if I'd had more work in May and June, but hey.
So, because I haven't had my car, and still don't have it - I'm picking her up tomorrow - I've had to drive one of the utes to get places. And, because it's so old and beaten up already, I had to use our old fencing ute - because apparently I'm rough on the gears and not to be trusted. I'm not saying I'm stupid, but there are some things in this world that I just can't easily comprehend and one of those things is driving manual vehicles - although I'm a heck of a lot better than when I first began. Basically it's the listening to the engine to know when to change gears, and accidentally missing gears, or worse, putting it into reverse while going up a hill that I have issues with. Yeah yeah, I know, ridiculous, right?! I'm just not practical that way, and hey I'm admitting to it.
But I am going to say that I really am getting my head around it, after this week. There hasn't been any stalling or bunny-hopping happening. Yes, I did flick it into reverse when going up a hill and around a corner when changing down into 4th (oops), panicked a bit, had my feet on both the accelerator AND the clutch (hehe) and sent Dad into a frenzy in the passenger seat with cars behind me. But that was the first time I'd driven a manual in well over a year. Changing up gear is fine, it's changing back down that scares me a bit lol!
Yesterday seeing as Mum's back still isn't quite right (it's getting better though) I had to drive. Basically this ute was needed for the fencing gear, Nick's ute was needed to pick up more posts and battens and Dad was needing to drive Kermit (the tractor) between jobs. So it's possible, if you were in the area, which I highly doubt, that you might've come across me cruising along behind a tractor going about 40Km/h, radio up loud and tapping my hand to the beat of the music on the steering wheel while holding it with a couple fingers. Yep, she's relaxed. What can you say, I've been driving nearly 5 years, the fact it was a manual means nothing at all for this girl :D (sighs with relief)
My (our) calfies seem to be going really well, we've got 76 in the sheds currently - not including however many came in this morning. So tomorrow I'd imagine that our first group of replacement heifers will either already be in the half round haybarn, for their transition to going outside, or will be heading out there that day. There's a lot of sorting out to do, as we've got about 20-25 bull calves in there and we're not sure whether the farmer is going to be clever and choose to raise them all until weaning (which will be a really smart move this year) or send them to the sales next week. And there are also a couple of Angus heifers in there too, as we all forgot that the bull jumped in a couple days before AI began last year (hehe). There are quite a few smaller jerseys that Mum wants to hold back for the second mob, as they won't be able to compete with their big Friesian sisters all that well.
As I said before, Mum's back is coming right, but it's still giving her grief. She's come down to the calves with me the last two mornings just to oversee what was going on (even though I've taken over chief calf rearer role!) and just to keep it somewhat moving. The idea though, is that she comes and watches - not do anything, or I'll make her walk home. Tough love in these parts! But I know exactly where my stubborn streak comes from mostly, because I've had to tell her off a few times today. Don't pick that up, don't do that. Stop helping me, you'll make it worse! Argh, she wants to help, but I wish she'd let herself get better properly first. Because honestly, if she doesn't get better I'll have to get one of the guys to help, and we all know that males have low tolerance/patience levels when it comes to calf rearing. (No offense intended to my readers!)
Not sure about feeding lambs, but calves, no leave that up to Mum and I, please.
Tomorrow night I'm catching up with Sam and Chantelle to watch a couple DVD's for what seems to be our monthly catch up. And currently I'm so jolly tired, for no reason whatsoever, all I'm really after is some chocolate :)