A Farmall Story|
by Ed Meadors
The year was 1978. Our young family had recently moved to rural Chesapeake, Virginia to a plot of land which would finally allow us to realize our dreams of a huge garden, critters and more lawn and pasture than we would ever use!
We needed a TRACTOR; not a riding mower or tractor wannabe, but a real TRACTOR.
The answer to our needs materialized in the form of a '44 Farmall A, complete with cultivators, discs, single plow, a 5ft.Woods belly mower and one, mounted spare 9.00x24 rear wheel.
The problem was that the tractor was located across the state line, over in Belvedere, North Carolina, about forty-five miles away. At that time I owned neither a suitable truck nor trailer to transport my find.
My new found friend and neighbor, Pat O'Brien, came to the rescue with his six cylinder, Ford, F-100 pick-up truck.
Off we went on an early Saturday morning rescue mission.
The tractor was located on a small row crop farm that was flat as a pool table. The only nearby loading facility was a drainage ditch that ran adjacent to the property. After surveying the overall situation, we figured that all we had to do to load the tractor into the truck was slide in the front axles, rotate and tuck in the rear wheels and remove the mower deck.
We backed the pick-up into the ditch, removed the tailboard and drove that little tractor into the pick-up's bed, right over the wheel wells! It fit like a glove, except it looked rather odd with all that tire hanging out the back! More for cosmetic reasons than anything, we reinstalled the tailboard; at least we felt better. We piled all the attachments, spare tire and mower deck in the bed, around the tractor.
That poor 'ole Ford just didn't have the power to pull all that rear weight out of the ditch. Unbelievably, the seller extracted the whole rig using a rusted out four cylinder Chevy Luv !!
Now, with all four wheels finally on hard pavement, off we went on our home bound journey with a very noticeable nose-high attitude (the truck's, not ours). No one had bothered to tell us that the tractor's tires were water filled!
About halfway into our return journey, we decided to stop in at a local diner for a much deserved bite to eat. It was still quite early on this Saturday morning and thus our tractor-truck combo was the only vehicle in the parking lot. We simply parked parallel between the highway and the diner.
As we leisurely ate breakfast, we noticed that the only other patron in the establishment was an elderly, hunch-backed old fellow, dressed in the typical khaki uniform of slacks, jacket and ballcap. The old gentleman might have had three teeth left in this head and had at least a two day stubble of grayish beard. We noticed that he would gaze out the picture window into the parking lot, back to us and then repeat the cycle. He finally spoke to us as we passed him on our way out the door.
His only words, "Fellers, I thinks ya got the wrong thing doin' the haulin'" !!
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