Cats Aren't The Only Ones Who Are Curious
Nibbling On My Knee
These are Zelda's twins. They were born Sunday evening (taking me completely by surprise), and have been staying with Zelda at The Bonding Suite Inn. Zelda had been bunking in a special pen adjacent to the barn with eight other pregnant ewes who, because they are either very old or probably carrying twins--or both--are receiving special treatment and lots of extra food.
They are known as The Spoiled Rotten Gang. I am such a pushover when it comes to these girls. (Okay, you're right. I'm a total pushover in general.) When my mother was visiting a few weeks ago, she couldn't believe how quickly I gave into them. I went from "No, girls, I don't think you need any grain right now" to filling up a bucket in about seven seconds. It's those big, beautiful, pleading eyes boring straight into me. That and their incessant, starving-sounding baaing. (Is that a word, baaing?)
Anyway, Zelda gave birth in that pen, which meant the three of them needed to be transported to the Bonding Suite Inn, which is located in the barn. If we had been in the barnyard (or even out in a field) I would have picked up the twins and, holding them close to the ground (because moms know lambs can't fly), walked in a backward crouch while mom (hopefully) followed us. But this time I needed to get Zelda and her twins out of The Spoiled Rotten Gang pen without the rest of The Spoiled Rotten Gang making a break for it, and then into the barn without any sheep escaping--hence the halter.
Moving the twins was a cinch--I simply tucked one under each arm and carried them to their comfy new quarters. Zelda, however, had to be dragged, pushed, and cajoled the entire way (which felt like about half a mile even though it was probably only 50 or 60 feet).
Moving a single sheep is rarely an effortless task. They do not like to be forced anywhere, especially if they are wearing a halter that is attached to your wrist. Those docile, obedient, incredibly clean sheep you see being led around in show rings by very small children at county fairs? Those are not
I'm sure each shepherd has their own way of coaxing a haltered sheep somewhere. My technique utilizes a running monologue of sweet, encouraging words inbetween my struggling moans and groans.
"Come on now, Zelda. We're almost there. You're doing great. You are so pretty! And your twins are adorable! What a wonderful job you did! I'm so proud of you! Almost there! Almost there! Yes, I know you can do this! Come on, Zelda, PLEASE!"
I also try to see the bright side of the situation. "There's definitely. . . yank!. . . no need. . . pull!. . to go. . . tug!. . .TO THE GYM!" (Yes, I really said that while moving Zelda.)
Watching me move a sheep might actually be more entertaining than Barn Cam. Actually, after looking at these two photos and thinking about moving Zelda, I had an idea that I think might be better than Barn Cam. You know those tiny cameras people wear on their foreheads like a miner's light so you can see everything they see. . .
Of course I probably would have destroyed the camera this morning when I bonked my bean in the barn (damn those low ceilings). Unfortunately I excel at running into things with my head. Today's whack was so good it knocked me right to the ground. I skipped my chores and staggered back to the house where Joe quickly administered ice, aspirin, and some very nice chocolates. But it's a little unnerving when you're holding a bag of ice to your head and realize it actually feels good.
So I guess the camera idea isn't such a great one after all. I am, however, thinking seriously about keeping my hardhat down at the barn.
A year of Farm Photos ago:
3/9/06: I Think They're Born Addicted To Treats
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