Harvest Moon Anton’s Diary: Year 3 Spring Part I

Day 1
My third year on the farm has commenced, and with it the snow has magically melted once more to reveal a bright new day (it has also reset all the grass to the same stage of growth, which looks less messy but prevents me from restocking the fodder silo straightaway). As soon as I got outside this morning, I planted all nine bags of Strawberry seeds, and later added five bags of Toy Flower seeds; it may seem like too much to handle, but as an experienced farmer I am confident that I can manage- I may even add a bag or two or cabbage seeds as I have no cabbages in the fridge. The spring mood also seems to have affected the animals, who were most energetic and intractable when I went into the barn to feed and milk them.

After devoting the afternoon to foraging for the spring items that the girls love so much, I went down to Rose Square to celebrate the New Year. All the older villagers were at the inn, and so I was able to chat up all the girls before sharing a dance with Popuri. Karen danced with Rick, but I’m sure she winked at me at one point.

Day 2
A busy day today, reminding me how different the bustling spring is from the sedate winter. After attending to the watering and the animals in the morning, I went down to town at lunchtime in order to catch Won and buy some more cabbage and pineapple seeds. Naturally, I took the opportunity to chat to all the girls, and a gift of eight Blue Grass for Mary turned out to be enough to tip her affections over into the green heart range.

Back home, I planted the two bags of cabbages outside, and used four bags of Pineapple seeds to optimise my hothouse. Crop efficiency has now been maximised in the hothouse, and so pineapples will form a regular line of profit.

Day 3
Since it was raining today, I was able to take a more Winter-like attitude to the farm tasks, eschewing watering for simply tending to the hothouse and animals. Afterwards, I naturally went into town to chat to all the girls and pick up some fish food- having somehow survived the pond being frozen all winter, the fish are now eating and breeding again, and their numbers are up to a solid 62.

In the afternoon, I turned my attention to foraging, before finally going to bed and trying to sleep despite Tony’s crying (I would pick him up and comfort him if I could, but for some reason I cannot).

Day 4
The rain must have done the fields some good, as the strawberries and toy flowers have all sprouted in the aftermath of the downpour (the cabbages are slow, but I have come to expect that). Unfortunately, since today was sunny and bright, I was forced to spend no fewer than four hours watering before nipping into town to chat to the girls. Afterwards, the afternoon was spent tending to the animals and foraging, although whilst out, I happened to run into a group of villagers talking to Harris. They were discussing an unknown furry attacker with long arms, a strange voice, at which point the bearded and muscular Gotz emerged from his house. Was it Gotz who scared them, and if so, was it intentional? Surely there cannot be anything sinister about a simple woodcutter…can there?

Day 5
The hothouse’s first Pineapples were ready today, and so it was with a sense of triumph that I harvested and shipped them, although I must remember to keep at least some of the next batch for cooking purposes. After they had been seen to, I went outside to continue the tedious task of watering, before taking a break to nip into town to chat to the girls. To my delight, not only did my continuing gifts bring Mary up to yellow heart level, but my daily chats with Ann have raised her to green heart. Now that Mary’s affections for me have grown, she has opened up to me a bit more, explaining how desperately she wants more people to come and use the library. I wish I could encourage the villagers to read more, but they seem an illiterate bunch, and are rarely willing to discuss anything with me outside of their limited parameters.

Naturally, in the afternoon I saw to the animals and went foraging again- I am now slightly worried about what will happen if I run into Gotz, but since I am well armed with various farming tools, I am not unduly concerned should he prove to be violent.

In other news, I have placed a Moondrop flower in the vase to give our bedroom that bright, spring-like feel.

Day 6
In an attempt to reduce the chaos in the barn, I tried feeding the animals first thing this morning, and while they were indeed orderly when I first walked in, they were soon milling around as usual- is there any way to avoid this pain? Other than that little change of routine, the day passed as normal with watering, tending to the animals and of course chatting to girls. I hope the men of the village are not becoming jealous of my prowess with the ladies, for they may come and sabotage my farm.

Day 7
Since my not insignificant patch of grass was ready today, I decided to put aside everything except the necessary farming tasks in order to concentrate on it- after all, I have used some 700+ bushels of fodder since I was last able to cut grass. After a day of intense cutting (and a relaxing mid-afternoon hot spring bath to resort my energy in the middle of it), I have finally restored my fodder count back up to the 600s, but I must put in additional work in order to cut down the rest of the field.

Day 8
The Spring Goddess Festival came around again today, and so as with last year, Popuri met me outside, dressed in her traditional costume. Although I felt somewhat guilty about leaving Tony crying indoors all day, I quickly finished up all my farm tasks and escorted her to the festival. As to be expected from this kind of event, it proceeded in exactly the same fashion as last year, with all the girls performing the dance before Popuri asked me to accompany her to the beach. I am only glad I managed to get everything done before the festival since, as always seems to happen, this simple sequence of events ended up taking up the rest of the day. Ah well, at least all the girls looked cute in their costumes.

Day 9
Since I was too busy yesterday to put any of the ripe Pineapples in the fridge, I took today’s harvest into the house- only to realise that I already have stored pineapples and don’t really need anymore. Fortunately, this little annoyance was soon erased by the fact that the first harvest of strawberries was ready, and so most of the day was spent collecting and shipping them (with eight saved for the icebox), with only a brief break in between to nip into town and visit the girls. I tried to explain to them that I would most likely be too busy on the farm in coming days to visit them as regularly, but as usual they did not want to engage in such a dialogue and instead repeated their same old lines.

Since harvesting and watering the crops took until late evening, I decided to forego foraging for the third day in a row- calm winter now seems far away compared to these hectic days.

In other news, the cows were so unruly this morning that I was forced to give up milking partway through, whilst my fence has had to be partially dismantled since it interferes with the harvesting of crops.

Day 10
Even though I promised to slack off on the secret affairs, somehow I just cannot resist- for example, today I had to call into Chicken Lil’s to pick up some more chicken feed, and so it seemed almost foolish not to present Mary with more gifts and chat to Elli and Ann on the way home (Karen is elusive during the mid-morning hours and so I had to miss her out). Afterwards, I went on a quick foraging mission in the vicinity of the hot springs, before returning home to cut down the rest of the grass and have a nice long soak before bed. I finally returned home at 10pm, my first late evening in many weeks.

Day 11
A fresh batch of Pineapples was ready today, and so after seeing to the animals, I harvested them prior to getting on with the other tasks. Once everything was done, I once again ventured into town to chat with Mary, and at long last my gifts were enough to swing her affections into orange heart level. The only trouble is that now she has begun talking of marriage- I already have to listen to Elli discuss wedlock, and now another woman wants to take my hand in marriage! When will they understand that they are mere dalliances who are lucky to get any attention from me- Popuri is, and always will be, my beloved wife.

In the afternoon, I turned my attention to foraging, and even ventured up Mother’s Hill to collect flowers for the first time in a while.

Day 12
Today was largely uneventful, which of course means that I had to work hard whilst encountering no particular novelties. I must, however, mention a rather bizarre post box that I have encountered in the middle of town- whenever I examine it, it says “How is your mother and father?”. Aside from the grammatical issues with this, I think everyone must agree that a post box that actually talks to you is a rare oddity indeed. I would of course like to contact my parents, but with no way to buy writing materials, I cannot send them any letters, and nor do they seem inclined to contact me.

Day 13
Since tomorrow is the spring thanksgiving festival (a time when one traditionally gives cookies to girls, even if I have thus far neglected to do so), I decided to have a go at whipping up some cookies in the kitchen, for although I already have a plateful for Popuri, it would be nice to make some for the other girls. Unfortunately, not only is the fridge getting bare of ingredients, but after painstakingly whipping up some butter, I accidentally threw it away mere moments later.

In an attempt to dull the pain of my idiocy, I went into town to chat with the girls, before heading back to forage on Mother’s Hill. At home, the Toy Flowers have finally bloomed, although since they look so pretty I will not pick them until the end of the season.

Day 14
Spring Thanksgiving is finally here, and so after giving Popuri my pre-prepared cookies (still fresh after all this time), I cooked up two more plates of cookies before running out of ingredients. Even though it was raining, I was able to track down Karen and Elli and give them the cookies, before purchasing some more flour and making further cookies for Mary and Ann. Everyone was delighted to receive cookies, and they even promised to give me something at winter thanksgiving, although the fact that I am married may prevent them from carrying out their word.

Thanks to the rain, I was able to skip the time-consuming watering and only do the most minimal of work on the farm, making sure of course to set aside some more eggs and milk for future cooking endeavours.

Day 15
As soon as I got outside this morning, the Mayor came over to talk to me, and for a moment I have to admit that I was worried he was going to take me to task for having secret affairs with all the eligible girls in the village. As it turned out, he just wanted some cucumbers for the cooking competition; since I haven’t planted any, I briefly went into a panic and contemplated rushing down to the supermarket to buy and plant some seeds, before realising that I have some in the fridge which I must remember to deliver to him on the 21st. Either way, I may plant some cucumbers tomorrow, as I need to keep my fridge well stocked.

The second harvest of strawberries was ready today, and most of the day was spent collecting and shipping them, an exhausting task which ensured that I did not have the time or inclination for foraging or going into town.

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