Saturday, 9 March 2013

Sunday the happy goat day

Greetings from the land of the rusted magpie. I have missed their beautiful warbles during the dark days recently, but yesterday they decided to try a little song. And yes, I think their vocal chords have corroded from disuse. They just managed an experimental sort of musical croak to each other and gave up for the day. Ah, well, they are feasting on grubs around the place at present, so maybe their song will heal!

Today the happy goat day? Yes. I have been meaning to buy them a lick for months and finally brought one home the other day. Licks are widely used in Australia for all grazing animals, the ancient soils tending to be deficient in various nutrients. The young man at the feed store lobbed the hefty cube into the car with casual insouciance. At this end I grunted and muttered as I pushed it onto the trolley. Today I took it down to the main paddock and offloaded it, then muttered some more as I peeled the carton off it and unwrapped the thing. Maybe there is a rare element they use in licks that weighs as much as lead, they are so heavy and unwieldy.

About half an hour later the goats happened upon the lick, which resulted in much pushing and shoving to have first turn - Parsley as usual, followed by Dill, with the little ones last but able to savour it once the big boys mooched off. So the goats are currently very happy chappies. Luckily licks last for ages, so that's a job I shouldn't have to repeat for a while.

I haven't heard back from the couple who inspected the place last week and pronounced it exactly what they wanted. The Australian term for folk who look, say they want the place, aren't actually sure about money, and then vanish is 'tyre kickers' and one has to use up all the itinerant tyre kickers before being lucky enough to find a genuine buyer. Sigh.

Some hopeful Jehovah's Witnesses called by yesterday with good news (not the Biblical sort, which they always offer). They insisted that the road is now partly open to Warwick. The busy workers have managed to ice it nicely with tar along the flats at last before water threatens it again.

Then the JW lady gave me even better news, telling me of a short cut I could take that would bring me out by the Warwick Golf course instead of trailing around the Lyndhurst Lane route. That made it worthwhile having my morning half taken up by unknown callers-in. I totally hate unexpected visitors. My idea of dress code at home is tatty old t-shirt, saggy old shorts and an old pair of sandals. When presented with elegantly dressed visitors I cringe. I'm dressed appropriately, they aren't!

Today when contemplating what weeds to pull up for the chooks, I felt looked at. Sure enough, there was one of the tiny frogs that live under leaves, pot plants and the like, looking at me hard, as much to say, 'You are NOT going to disturb me, are you?' Who am I to argue with a 15mm long froglet? I pulled some other weeds.

Tomorrow is D-day for Banjo. D as in de-stitch day. Amazingly he seems to have an intact row of stitches between his back legs - there's always a first time, and I can surprise the vet. Banjo is still making pretty good progress. I can now put his food down for him without him taking my hand with it, sitting briefly so I have a chance to place it fast. Banjo has hardly let out a yip for the past few days, and yesterday I took him on the lead while I brought in the goats. I kept him well back from them, and although he found it a hard exercise he wasn't too bad. he did hope to manage a quick lunge as Dill wandered in last as usual, but Banjo forgot he was attached to me!

That reminds me about Dill. Recently he has been very slow going into the goat enclosure at night. When they go in the gate they have to go around to the back of the shed to find their hay. This is not hard when they have done it umpteen times - except for Dill. By the time he has sorted out that he actually is going in the pen the other goats have vanished to eat hay. What, no goats? Dill is distraught, peers back out to the paddock and calls frantically for the other goats. They don't bother to answer, so eventually he realises what he needs to do. He lumbers fatly off to join the rest of the brotherhood while I shake my head. Has there ever been a more stupid animal?

And talking of goats, they are all sitting nearby waiting for me to feed them. I had better go.

Jackie and Claire, may your snow leave for the Pole, and your spring flowers smile!

Take care, all - 


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