There are times I feel I've been whisked back into the 1950's since living here. I've noticed over the years how men in particular (sometimes the women, too) can't look a woman in the eyes, can't have an adult conversation and won't take instructions from a woman. The amount of times I've answered the door to workmen (and other men) asking, "is he in?" and "is the boss man about?" and "I can't see him anywhere (looking around frantically as though they're terrified of speaking to a woman), shall I come back?" Do men realise how annoying this is? Do they not understand that in this day and age, women do possess some skills and are capable of having a conversation without talking about kids, washing and what to have for tea? I was particularly irritated the other day when two workmen showed up at the house. They came in separate cars. As we have sheep and lambs on the garden it's important we keep the drive gate closed at all times. But these workmen left it wide open. It's usually open when there are no sheep about, and as they've been before it was quite obvious that it was closed for a reason. I was just about to get in the shower when they arrived, the dogs barking furiously alerted me to their arrival. I peeped out of the window and assumed The Farmer would be around so I carried on and got in the shower. Unfortunately, The Farmer wasn't around and the next thing I knew there was a ladder being fixed against the outside of the house. Without further ado, I got out of the shower, dressed and went downstairs. Flung open the back door in temper and realised it was the two men who had been coming to do some maintenance on the outside of our house since the horrendous winter of 2010. It's now spring 2012.
They've been a few times in between, looked up at the damage, rubbed their chin, mumbled a few words about ladders, then gone away.
We've chased them up several times and I've had words with The Farmer about why we have to use them, but he insists. Life on the farm is never dull, but it is a little bit too laid back sometimes when things clearly need to be done. So when I went outside and almost bit one of their heads off (the other one was hiding behind the wall), it was quite obvious they didn't want to talk to me. After all, I'm a woman, what the fuck do I know about gutters and drain pipes? Actually not a lot, but that's not the point. I stomped off and summoned The Farmer from the shed who calmly greeted the workmen as if he was grateful they'd turned up. I give up. I really do.
Though I'm not a feminist, it does rattle my cage when I'm made to feel like I don't know nowt. Even if I don't.