I read a column on Stuff under the heading ‘Why you couldn’t pay me enough to plant trees or build fences’. It was written by a Jackson Thomas who was labelled on google as the ‘warriors reporter’. That tells me he’d have to be an Auckland metrosexual.

He obviously also comes from a position of blissful ignorance.

The column starts with the statement ‘why wouldn’t a young person want to dig holes, lug around heavy fence poles and collapse into bed every night exhausted because they’ve worn themselves out working for someone else?

The facts are than there are now post hole diggers so fencers don’t have to dig holes.

Fence posts actually aren’t that heavy. Strainers are but they’re used sparingly.

As far as collapsing into bed every night exhausted Thomas has no idea.

I worked long enough as a fencer, two nights a week I’d go to Rugby practice, Friday night to the pub, Saturday to play Rugby and then hit the town.

Yes, Saturday could be exhausting.

Thomas also takes issue at a fencer called Ray who went on to Stuff’s facebook page saying how he enjoyed fencing and prefers fencing on hills.

Thomas tells us that Ray hadn’t sold him on fencing.

His statement that ‘just having dried mud on my hands makes me physically ill’ suggests to me he should stay in central Auckland and drink his lattes with rubber gloves.

Thomas also didn’t see the benefit of a hard day’s work on decent wages as he’d have to think of his ‘deteriorating knees and sunburnt neck.

Hats work when you’re in the sun and despite building many fences I played active sport into my 60’s. My knees and neck are fine.

Finally Thomas admits that the thought of him being a physical wreck at the ripe old age of 40 wouldn’t get him fencing.

The local fencer here is into his 60’s and fine.

At 40 I was still playing competitive sport.

I enjoyed my time fencing. I was fit, it paid well, I was outdoors and you could see what you had built. I worked for a fencer for six months and then did my own thing.

The money was excellent. In passing the person who taught me to fence is now 80 and still working his farm.

The other option I suppose would have been for me to have completed a media studies degree and ending up unemployed.

I’m glad I went fencing.