Monday, March 28, 2011

Horse Trading

I have bragging rights!  I don't call hubby the Miracle Worker for nothing!  He's got an uncanny ability to find good deals which can be finalized simply by trading.  Naturally it's not always easy to trade because once in a while we still need that green stuff they like to print so much of, in order to pay our few bills.  Imagine trying to pay for fuel or auto insurance with the barter system!  Not happening.

For a tank of diesel fuel, I'll trade you this goat!

What?!  Why not?!

I'd better leave the bartering to my hubby.

As it turns out, so much of our subsistence is owed to his horse-trading abilities.  The most recent of these amazing trades was found by Miracle Worker on Craig's List.  MW found this ad for a Case Backhoe.  He had pretty much talked himself out of even trying to get his hands on one, but figured it wouldn't hurt to dream.  So, he clicked on it and began reading.  For the backhoe this gentleman wanted to trade for a pickup truck!  Didn't matter if it was a Ford, Chevy, or Dodge.  MW called him up and they got to talking.  After discussing the value of each item, they agreed for the backhoe we would give him the truck and a solar system.  Both parties were very satisfied and agreed right then and there they would do the deal.

As is common around here, it takes a lot of time to get from here to anywhere.  My favorite movie line sums it up, "Well, aint this a geographical oddity!  Two weeks from everywhere!"  Yep, that's us.  Actually it just feels that way!  We packed up the family and hit the road within an hour with title in hand and solar system in tow.  We borrowed a rancher friend's one ton pickup truck and heavy equipment trailer, which added a few extra hours to our trip even before the three hours it would take to get to our destination.  In other words, it took all day to get there.

MW explained the solar system to the man and showed him the truck.  Then MW got to operate the backhoe a bit and look it over.  With everyone happy, we headed out.  Deal done!

We spent the night in a motel there in town.  We really didn't want to drive a heavy load home in the dark.  Besides, we were tuckered out!

The next day, yesterday, we headed home.  Instead of taking the risk of getting this load stuck in the wet Big Sandy, we off-loaded the backhoe and we caravaned up the mountain.

It took an hour and a half to drive it to our care-taking home!

This wasn't the end of our day.  We needed to return the rancher's truck and trailer.  To do that we had to go back into and through town to drop them off.  Before getting onto the interstate, the rear drive shaft fell out!  MW took it out, put the trailer on my truck, put the rancher's truck into 4-wheel drive and we got everything delivered.  Looking at the condition of the drive shaft and u-joint, it wasn't our fault, it had been in bad shape a long time.  But since it happened on our watch, MW offered to fix it for him.

We didn't get home last night until nine.  We all went to sleep rather quickly.  And today the kids got to ride in it and learn to operate the backhoe arm.  They loved it!

It's amazing what can be done with a small dream actuated on the barter system!

I left so much out of this condensed story.  There is another story within this one that I want to tell.  It's about how dreams really do have a way of coming true.  We've got so many examples to prove it.  Now I'm wondering if another dream seed has been planted....

Come back soon and I'll tell you all about it!!!

Until then,
Happy Dreamin'

This post is linked to the Prairie Homestead Barn Hop #6

Enjoy looking at what so many other wonderful homesteaders do!


  1. What a trade! Must admit, I'm just a little bit jealous. ;) You will be able to accomplish so many projects with your new toy. What fun! Thanks for sharing this with the Homestead Barn Hop!

  2. What a great barterer! We have a friend that barters a lot and I never really thought about it until he mentioned it. Can't wait to see what you have up next!

  3. Thanks for coming by my blog today!
    I'm glad you did-- and then I came over here to read this spectacular story... that is exactly what happens to us!
    Just imagine pulling up in the mans drive-- and sheepishly saying 'Ooops'

    I want to barter! I think the idea and notion of bartering is a great way to go. you I AM NOT BARTER SAVVY!

    Great post.

    ~ Pat

  4. I absolutely loved this story, because my Hubby is the SAME way. The man can horse-trade anything and everything, and has done rather well for us by doing so. I do believe he'll be jealous when he finds out someone got such a nice piece of heavy equipment for a pickup and solar system! What a deal! Gotta love being married to a savvy man with good bargaining skills. ;)

  5. Thanks for your post. I appreciate your attitude and your sharing your experiences with us. My wife and I are on a similar adventure. Its nice to see others going through it as well, as a sense of validation, and to learn how others deal with the challenges that come.