Life would be better without mud says Anne Marie Hamilton

Anne-Marie Hamilton is struggling to deal with the amount of mud down on the farm in Hail Weston.

Anne-Marie Hamilton is struggling to deal with the amount of mud down on the farm in Hail Weston. - Credit: ANNE-MARIE HAMILTON

What is it about mud? The very word has a harsh, uncompromising sound about it, and the sight of it makes me feel quite depressed, particularly at this time of year, when it seems to become a ‘constant’ in my life.

January tends to be a bit gloomy, with short, dark days, but it would be far more tolerable, if it was not for all the mud that proliferates in the winter months.

It is impossible to step out of the house, without putting on a pair of boots, as the farm track outside invariably has large lumps of mud on it that have fallen from a passing tractor, or even just hitched a ride under the wheels of the car, only to drop off, when the car stops in the yard.

I have tried putting down two door mats inside the back door, to prevent the wretched stuff from walking all the way through the house. Tommy, our terrier, is the worst offender for leaving dirty footprints, as he assiduously avoids wiping his feet on either of them, and just plods across the floor, without a care in the world.

Mind you, he is not the only culprit, and it seems to me that farm houses and clean kitchen floors are clearly incompatible!

Life isn’t much better outside, as the heavy clay on some of our fields clings lovingly to our farm boots. It can be an unnerving experience to leave your boot behind, firmly stuck, as you try to walk through a particularly muddy patch.

There is nothing more unpleasant than finding yourself standing in your socks, ankle-deep in freezing mud.

Hunts Post farming column by Anne-Marie Hamilton, of Wood Farm, in Hail Weston

Hunts Post Farming Column by Anne-Marie Hamilton, of Wood Farm, Hail Weston - Credit: HUNTS POST

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Having given the matter much thought, I have decided to approach the problem from a different angle. There will be no more mud for me!

From now on, it will be referred to as ‘soil’. Soil has a positive ring to it, and conjures up images of life, abundance, growing and feeding the world.

Soil health is the number one topic in farming today and, as farmers, looking after it is our primary concern. Indeed, it is our life-blood!

I will, therefore, ditch the gloom as we go into this new year, and think positively in future about all the soil that I encounter – in the fields, or even on my kitchen floor!