The troops are sadly depleted for the next few days. Quatre is off until Monday having her “down time” in Seattle. We know she will be back, she left her shiny red truck which we can hold in ransom for her ! smile. We miss you Quatre !! Big brother John was taken screaming and shouting ( NOT !!) for a day off the ranch. He and Ed are having a “man” day and we are not expecting him home for dinner. Hopefully Ed will keep him under control and return him safely to us. We miss him too. Saturday and Sunday have also been requested for escape days and he goes back to Wales on Wednesday. If we paid him we would be obliged to dock his wages !!
Ginger our stalwart WOOFER intern headed down to the barn with Greg for yet another day scooping various versions of poop, avoiding the amorous advances of Macho the buck and loving up little Hol-ley the calf and her partner in crime, Lamb Chop. Somehow, regardless of whatever weather conditions Mother Nature throws at us, Ginger manages to come home with a huge smile and an even huger appetite !
The extensive Winter storm we had on Thursday tested but didn’t break our new flood defences. John and Malc uncomplainingly ( well, kind of …??) dug ditches, built walls and cleared culverts ready for the torrential rain we promised would be coming and fortunately came while John was still here. Grudgingly after careful consideration, he had to admit that maybe, just maybe, the rain, driven by the wind and hitting the ground horizontally might equal ( not beat !!) the rainfall in Dolgellau ( Wales, UK, spelling uncertain). The sheep didn’t care who was winning the rainfall stakes, they just knew it was wet, very wet and it was cold, very cold. They huddle together under the sweeping branches of the Cedar tree practicing (and becoming very accomplished) at looking wretched and forlorn . They would have had more shelter from the Cedar if they hadn’t pruned the tree and eaten every branch at munching level earlier in the year.
The wind howling around the barns and whistling through the trees can (and occasionally does) cause chaos and confusion. From my observation point here at the house I watched a very mournful, very wet and cold looking Lamb Chop on the wrong side of the gate into his field shelter that had been closed by the wind. Food and shelter was on the other side and to make matters worse…his cohort in mischief and crime, Hol-ley was inside, warm dry AND munching. Sometime life is SO unfair !!!
The wind also caused problems for Greg. The sheep were anxious to escape from the cruel wind and relentless rain and return to the shelter of the barn. Bran the border collie was in place, the sheep, fronted by boss ewe Bandit were crowding the gate but each time Greg left an open gate, the wind closed it. Bran was ready but for some reason Dad was running back and forth and the sheep weren’t moving..no fun for a border collie busting for action. Eventually the reserve team came to his rescue and Bandit was able to lead her rowdy ladies home to a warm dry barn and food.
Well, the sun is still shining and Greg and stalwart Ginger are down at the barn, hopefully warm and dry. I’d better do as I’m told or the back police will be on my case. Take care, keep warm and safe, M