When I think of Humbert’s Farm, I remember my own grandfather’s farm. It’s like taking a step back in time. He used a scythe blade on the side of his old Alis Chalmers tractor, just like this one, to cut the hay.
Grandpa didn’t have a baler. The hay was raked into doodles and tossed by hand onto the tractor. If my cousins and I were well-behaved, we got to ride the hay wagon and jump into the hay to smash it down. Fun times!
Mechanical balers replaced the old ways, and now, most farmers don’t even bale their hay, they roll it, but I think Humbert would have harvested his hay using an ox or a horse and not an Alis. The Cathillon children may have jumped into it to smash it down as well.
Humbert’s work at Le Petit-Courty varied between growing grapes, making wine, raising farm animals, and crops, and utilizing every resource available to feed his family.