Money Does Grow on Trees!

The wal­nuts in our yard promised a big re­turn on my in­vest­ment of time and sweat.

Country - - HUMOR - BY CINDY HASK­INS Ash­land, Ohio

Last fall, a friend from church stopped by and men­tioned all the wal­nut trees in our yard. He said he gath­ers the wal­nuts on his prop­erty and sells them for 14 cents per pound to an Amish fam­ily near Ap­ple Creek. I rubbed my chin, looked up at the sky and thought of the fresh air, ex­er­cise and money I could earn gath­er­ing wal­nuts. The next day, I headed out to the yard with my golf cart, three 7-gal­lon buck­ets and lots of en­thu­si­asm! In less than 15 min­utes, I had all the buck­ets full and headed back to the barn to look for more con­tain­ers. I found seven feed bags and two muck buck­ets. I was so ex­cited! This was so easy, and the wal­nuts were free and right there in our yard! When the time came to cash in, I found the Amish farm eas­ily. I was the sec­ond in line and watched how the whole process worked. When it was my turn, I cau­tiously backed the truck up to the huller. As the wal­nuts came out of the huller, they were put into the green mesh bags and then placed on a scale. I saw four bags on the scale weigh­ing 200 pounds. I chuck­led as I got into the truck with a fist­ful of cash. It took me seven hours to make $28. OK, so that’s only $4 per hour, but I got paid to ex­er­cise and en­joy the outdoors, plus I had enough money to buy some bot­tles of Aleve for my aching back. I re­turned sev­eral times in Oc­to­ber. Af­ter each trip to the farm I quickly for­got about my aches and pains as I tucked the money into my pocket. So I iced my mus­cles and did some stretches for a week and went back to my fi­nal gath­er­ing with re­newed vigor. I named my new en­ter­prise “To­tally Nuts.” It was per­fect! On Oct. 30, I hauled my last load. My hus­band, who had been sus­pi­ciously ab­sent dur­ing the gath­er­ing process, de­cided to ride along. I showed hubby how to prop­erly po­si­tion the truck for max­i­mum ease in un­load­ing into the huller hop­per. I un­loaded four large trash cans, two muck buck­ets, seven feed bags and three 7-gal­lon buck­ets. I knew this was go­ing to set a new record for me! I couldn’t be­lieve my eyes when I saw the to­tal was 391 pounds. That day I made $58.65, bring­ing my grand to­tal for the sea­son to $120.55. I had to put fuel in the truck on this trip and my smart hus­band pointed out that af­ter buy­ing $58.25 worth of gas, I had 40 cents left over. How nice of him to ex­plain that to me. Boy, I can hardly wait for next year!

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