"Changing water" is synonymous, to me, with "no more happiness." We cannot leave town, have an early evening together or a late morning together for 6 months out of the year.
What is "changing water?" It's moving irrigation water from one part of a field to another. You open a valve here, close one there, and if you're using "wheel lines," (think "sprinklers on wheels") then you move 'em. This happens every 12 hours. No matter what you're doing, when the clock strikes 7 (am or pm), you abandon all happiness to "change water."
I often go with my husband, sit in the car and read, listen to Catholic radio, or just watch him in girlish wonder as he hikes across the field in his knee-high irrigation boots.
But the other night it was near dark and he needed to do it in a hurry. "Can you please go down by the corral and flip a brake? It would save me a lot of time. I'm sorry, you're going to get horribly wet... do you mind?" Fresh off of my "you can canonize me now because I'm a married version of St. Therese" post I could hardly say "nah, change it yourself!" So, shod in flip flops and clad in an ankle-length skirt I cooed sweetly, "of course, dearest."
I left my car in the dirt road with the brights on so I would be able to see a bit. I tip-toed carefully over the sludge. "This isn't too bad," I thought. Then the hay got higher. And it was sopping wet. And it was freezing cold. And my toes were squishing in freshly-irrigated muddy slosh. And sharp alfalfa stubs bit my ankles. And I kept praying my Angel of God prayer out loud. At last I found the brake. "THANK YOU LORD" I yelled loudly.
But as I walked back through the muddy icy cold sludge field with my skirt hiked up around my knees THE WHEEL LINE STARTED MOVING!! (of course it did... it was supposed to) AND IT ALMOST TRAMPLED ME. I thought for sure I was going to slip. I ran. I had to.
My car! My little green car! IT WAS IN THE PATH OF THE WHEEL LINE... just feet away! I bolted for it. Since I'd left my brights on, I was sprinting blind. It was like a scene from an action/horror movie. I literally jumped into the driver's seat and FLOORED it away from its impending doom.
The second I backed it up, that nasty giant wheel line with its steely cold self was right where my car had been -- in its very tire tracks.
And that, dear friends, is why I'm not a farmer...