Saturday, March 19, 2016

Funny Smells and Wasted Bacon

I have two pickups. One is my feed pickup, and it is just barely road worthy. In fact, the rest of my family refuses to drive it. It might be because it does tend to wonder a little when traveling down the road. Their hesitance might be because it only has one working headlight. Actually it is mainly because of the fact that one door handle is broken and both doors are sprung. That and the fact that after many years of feeding, checking cows and calving season it has a certain odor that is permanently ingrained in its interior.
The other is my good pickup. It is my Sunday Go to Meeting transportation. Other than pulling the stock trailer and trips to town I try not to use it for farm work. The key operative word is trying. Sometimes involving it in farm work is inevitable, especially given the wear and tear factor of the afore mentioned feed truck. I assume I am not the only one in this situation.
A while ago, about December I think, I ended up driving the good truck to do chores. If you remember December was very wet and they lots were very muddy. Because of that I ended up in the good pickup with my muddy chores clothes and boots. During this wet period my lots and barns got really wet and the smell of wet sheep and cattle is not good.
That is why the funky odor in the good pickup did not surprise me. At first I just assumed it was something on my boots. I cleaned the floor mats and yet the odor malingered. I proceeded to try a couple of different air fresheners, yet the odor never quite seemed to leave. My fear was that my good truck had started that inevitable journey to becoming a feed truck.
While I was not happy with that reality, I had resigned myself to accept it. I would apologize to my passengers and explain that the odor was that of wet sheep and other things. The odor got fainter but never quite went away. Especially if the truck had been shut up and sitting in the sun. I had tried and tried to solve the mystery but to no avail.
 Occasionally I need to swap vehicles with Jennifer and her sense of smell is acutely better than mine. More important her level of tolerance for things that are not quite right is much lower than mine. She insisted that there had to be a reason and that it was more than just the smell of wet sheep and muddy lots. Her order was to detail the pickup until the odor went away.
The pickup was moderately dirty with a good layer of dust all over. We also had purchased a new shop vac that was smaller and much easier to get into tight places with. This was something that would play a very crucial role in the final vanquishing of the mystery smell. In any case I set about vacuuming and wiping the dust and grime from my good pickup.
With the new smaller shop vac I found myself getting into nooks and crannies that before had been untouchable. That led me to the area under the passenger’s seat. In my zeal to get every piece of dirt and every dog hair out of my truck I reached up under the passenger’s seat, all the way to the front, over the little metal barrier. I felt the most curious thing, some sort of package wrapped in paper, butcher’s paper to be exact. I got a firm hold on the object and carefully lifted it out.
Much to my surprise I found a one pound package of bacon from the local locker and it all made sense. In December, around the time of the monsoon, I had went to the locker and picked up pork that we had gotten from the neighbor and put it in the back seat. Somewhere during the ride home apparently one of the packages of bacon had slid off out of the bag and under the seat. The real mystery is how it got behind that metal barrier toward the front of the seat.
Triumphantly I told Jennifer about my discovery and how I had solved the problem. She did not share my enthusiasm for the successful odor removal and reminded me that the problem should have been solved long ago. I was left with a mixture of emotions; joy that the odor was finally gone, pride in my accomplishment, dismay that Jennifer did not share my excitement and an overall sense of loss because I had wasted a package of bacon. Oh well, at least the truck smells better, even in the sun.

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