Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Look out, yard!

We had a great time at the auction yesterday. Well, except for the mud, the unexpected high temperatures, the walking........! This auction place is very large (something like 26 acres) and they had every piece of equipment you could possibly think of. I always enjoy people-watching and this was certainly a day for that! There were what looked like farmers with overalls, bikers with ponytails (many of them gray!) and more tattoos than someone on Miami Ink, lots of Amish men in bright colored shirts and straw hats, contractor-looking types with tape measures, cell phones and work boots, and one annoying man wearing too much gold jewelry and riding around on a golf cart that had a sign on the back that read "On The Spot Financing! Credit In 15 Minutes!".

The ground was very muddy and I don't think the rain the night before was entirely to blame. The spitting going on there would rival a busy dentist's office! I was beginning to think that spitting on the ground was a prerequisite for attending an auction like this, and I asked Jerry about it. He laughed and said that if I looked closely, I would notice that just about every man there had a cheek full of chewing tobacco. EWWWW!!! I was careful to look where I walked after that. With the number of auctions they have, that land doesn't stand a chance of EVER drying out.

Jerry went there mainly because they had two of the tractors that he has been interested in for a while. He has been looking on the internet, in classified ads and at dealerships, and pricing them. They are actually kind of hard to find. John Deere has only been making them since 2002 and so there aren't many used ones out there, which was why he was surprised to find two of them at this auction.

The auctioneer was in a little booth on the back of a pickup truck that had loudspeakers on it (and I mean LOUD!), and it would ride through, stopping at each item and auctioning it off. It took a couple of hours before the little cart made it to the tractor Jerry was interested in. When the bidding finally started on it, there were only three bidders including Jerry. The bids went around around three times, then one man shook his head and was out of the bidding, so it was just down to Jerry and one other man. Jerry had told me earlier what his limit was and as the bids began to reach it, I found myself getting nervous. I knew he really liked this machine, but I also knew that he meant exactly what he said and that he wouldn't go a dime over his limit. Finally the bidding got to $2000.00 under his limit. All eyes turned to the other bidder. The man hesitated a moment then nodded. Uh oh - the bidding was now up another $500.00. Then the auctioneer turned to Jerry who seemed to be thinking long and hard about it, and then finally nodded. It was back to the other man now. He thought a little longer this time and finally after what seemed like hours, he shook his head. The auctioneer shouted "SOLD to number 2508!" I was so happy to see Jerry get this, and at less than we ever dreamed he would get it for. I was grinning like an idiot and I knew he really wanted to also, but it was a pretty manly kind of auction, and that didn't seem to be the thing to do right then!

He is going tomorrow to pick it up. We didn't take his truck and trailer to the auction and so we knew that if he won that he would have to make another trip to get it. It's really not a bad trip. It only took us about two and a half hours to get there and the scenery is beautiful.

After the auctioneer had moved on to other items, Jerry went inside to pay and I was standing next to his tractor waiting for him. Out of the corner of my eye I caught movement. Heading straight for me was Golf Cart Man. He brought his golf cart up to a halt and jumped out. He stuck out his hand and introduced himself. Not wanting to appear rude, but being blinded by the sun glinting off his gold jewelry, I shook his hand. He motioned toward the tractor. "HECK OF A DEAL YA GOT THERE!" he shouted at me. I had to resist the urge to spit and shout back "HE**, YEAH!". Then he gave his true purpose for being there. He wanted to know if we would like a loan to pay for the tractor. Now, I may be a newbie when it comes to auctions, but surely people don't go to auctions and bid on stuff without knowing how they're going to pay for it, do they?! I told him politely that we weren't interested in a loan and he continued to tell me of all the wonderful financing options he could offer. Just then, Jerry came back out. Then it was his turn to listen to Golf Cart Man's sales pitch. Jerry's a little more to-the-point than I am, and soon Golf Cart Man was zooming on to his next victim - er, customer. All in all, it was a very good day - and after tomorrow no yard will be safe!

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