The paddy fields are now full and it is a pleasant sight. These fields were lying barren after the floods of 2018. Nobody came forward to plant except a farmer here or there and even then the high wages put them off.
All of a sudden, a lady named Lissy came forward and met all the people who own these fields. She and her husband along with a few enthusiastic farm helpers put forward a proposition that they would cultivate rice grains and requested the permission of the owners.
To her delight, everyone agreed because she would give them rice grains in return. The monetary returns would be minimal because the effort and money put into ready the land would far exceed the profit whereas the grains would mean the owners would get fresh produce without any effort on their part.
The harvest would likely take place around mid-January and all the people are hoping the climate stays stable, till then at least.
These very same fields were submerged in the floodwaters both in 2018 and 2019. So, it was a heavy task to clean it off and remove the rubbish that had piled up and also make sure that the land was tilled. A few trees were cut off from our land to help the tiller get down on to the field.
I sure hope that the lady gets rewarded with a good harvest for the hard work she is putting in. She prepares food for the workers and brings it over for them to eat and after they eat, she sits down near the fields and eats her food, quite late in the afternoon. Her dedication is to be admired and applauded.
As per her instructions, we are bursting small crackers to scare the storks off. The birds are beautiful to look at but they tend to destroy the crops in the search for insects and worms, snails.
The next ones to arrive would be the parakeets when the grains are ripening. These are more dangerous and hard to drive away as they come in huge flocks but by then there would be someone to continuously watch over the crops.
The side ditch is filled with water from the nearby canal so that the crops stand in water and to prevent weeds from sprouting. Also, from time to time, the weeds that do come up are plucked so that the farmer gets a good harvest.
Machines are now used to harvest the crops unlike in the past where it used to be manual labor but that also had a beauty to it as many people were involved in the process and it used to be a sight to watch the people beat the grains and separate it from the chaff. Food was prepared for all and there was much laughter and societal bonding, sadly replaced by machines. All it takes now is a sack to be kept near the machine in the fields itself and it will be filled with grains, automatically.
Although the labor cost is less, there is an absence of human interaction and goodwill.
The present generation will never get to see the traditional harvest, probably.
(grains from a previous harvest)
(The machine that is used to harvest grains - from a previous harvest )
Another reason why the people adopted the machine is that there is no loss of grains. So, in a way, it is beneficial to the farmer. These grains are then sent to the mills to be got as rice and sold both inland or sometimes, even exported if there is surplus.
Those of you who are familiar with wheat cultivation or do it, please write about it so that others get to know about it.
"The world needs more farmers" - quote from the movie 'Interstellar'
images - own