Piping hot, jet-black oil was spewing out of the plastic vein. The plastic vein of the hydraulic arm, lifeblood of a mammoth yellow beast. A beast pushed to the edge and over, straining it’s cast iron limbs to the bursting point. With a shuttering groan of pressure released, the bucket of the tractor settled a few inches closer towards earth.
It’s workmen and operators stood around, lazily fanning their faces against the heat or cocking a hip and leaning against the low brick wall. Each of their dirty expressions was calm, with almost humorous indifference. But none looked away as the dark liquid stained more and more of the light brown dust. Their unexpected break was uneasy and unsure.
55 tons of weight rendered useless and lame by the strain of lifting the load of bricks. 250 thousand dollar invested in this great tool, which had so eagerly conquered the earth it rolled over as it tore up grass, sod, scrub brush and reeds. Loyally it hauled the supplies to build whatever it’s foremen imagined and designed.
Now, with a heaving lurch, it’s arms gave way completely. No resistance slowed them as they thudded to the ground. A puff of dust and a dull thump was their final say. Now silent the tractor stood, and the men sat silent too, watching the black oil spread.