The reason I'm so slow getting used to inflation is because Alf Gullikson of Creston had a sale eight years ago where he had auctioned off a red and a green self-propelled combine. The two were in excellent condition but red combines were out of style around Creston that year, so for only $200 it was all mine. Alf said I stole it, but I got a cancelled check to prove I didn't.
Let me tell you how reliable Alf's old red machine was. For the last three years of my farming life Sugar ran our old machines so I could enjoy running Mr. Gullikson's ex-self propel. He had it all fixed up, handy-like, so he could operate it with his artificial arm.
Five years ago I sold Alf's old self propel, along with mine for company, to Scott Hamilton and his cousins who had them shipped to Chehalis. In a foreign costal environment they are still performing every season by cutting soggy barley and wheat in a heavily populated dairy country.
It was rather a sad sight when we went over to take a look at our old combines. Alf's machine still looked natural, despite wet, greasy weeds all tangled around the header and sprockets. They were sitting among the coastal fir trees, truly out of their proper environment. Those machines were used to the dry, powdery dust of Lincoln County, where the air is filled with chaff and flying, dry straw. I'm sure those cheap Eastern Washington machines saved the Hamilton's a lot of money, making it possible to help cope with inflation.