|photo of the field with the hill and the arm of the mountain|
My brothers and I helped with chores, changed irrigation pipes, rolled and hauled bales, herded the sheep, and helped with lambing and marking the lambs(my least favorite thing. I especially didn't care for herding the sheep.The main pasture we kept them in was on "the hill". It is a large hill behind the farm house.
|The big pine is in the upper right.|
On the hill is one huge pine tree. It has been huge since I was small and it continues to grow even though the last few years have knocked a few limbs off. As kids we'd climb up to the tree and play around the massive base. Digging up decaying pine cones, using a twig to irritate the pincher bugs until they'd latched onto the twig and we flung the bug and twig out in to the grass. it was shade in the summer when you hiked up the hill dragging a large box. Once refreshed,we'd continue on to the top of the hill and then one, two, or all three of us would get int he box and rock it to the edge. Screaming and clinging to one another we'd sail down the slick dry grass toward the bottom. In the winter it was a great sled and as we got older inner-tube hill. The first time I knew my husband was a keeper was when we were sailing through the air after out inner-tube hit a rock and he spun so he landed on his back with me on top of him.
In the summer we used the river as our swimming pool. We'd haul inner-tubes to use to float from the bridge to the swimming hole and spend hours playing in the deeper water. But there were also days when the whole family swam or piled rocks to make more water run into the ditch that irrigated the orchard.
My best memory of the swimming hole doesn't even have anything to do with swimming.At least not for me! My brothers and I were riding horses. My little brothers Welsh pony was being stubborn and not wanting to cross the river. We always rode across the river to get to the mountain side and ride up the mountain. This particular day, his horse was rearing and having nothing to do with the water. My older brother decided he'd show my younger brother how to make the pony mind. He slid off his horse and hopped on the pony. The pony went in to the river and laid down! My younger brother and I never laughed as hard as we did that day!