The Week for Getting Good! April 19, 2008
As I mentioned before.Albert is the new English speaking herder and I am now the straw boss in training. Slowly.I am getting the hang of getting the big square hay bales picked up with the tractor, and placed just right so that feeding the flakes (yeah, I'm not good enough yet to do it all with the tractor) is easier. Ok, I'm so not a professional! Driving the tractor for me has always been sort of more fun than work. Even when I am the one plowing snow from the driveway it's more for fun! I can and have grappled large bales and placed them in feeders for the horses. Usually with Albert in the cab telling me what would be the BEST way to do it.
Well.Albert is 90 miles away being my sheep herder! I'm on my own! I know how much to feed which of the little bunches of sheep that are here on the place by the house. I know how to get the big bale out of the hay shed and up to the pens. Taking off a quarter of the bale to feed to the bucks with the tractor.this is where I laugh out loud!!! For the first week that Albert was gone all the feeding was done with my trusty pitch fork. I often got "baaa-ed" for not moving quickly enough. I also dropped 10 lbs the first week. Imagine that.diet and exercise!
By the end of the first weekend I was no longer manually forking hay. I can now deliver, scatter and feed the bale all with the tractor. The sheep seem to appreciate the increase in speed. Trainable.me.Nahh!
Just when things start getting a little more routine.NEXT! The kids, the mom-in-law and I loaded up and headed for camp to tend to my herder! The drive was nice and the wind seems to have died down a bit. Most of the herd had been successfully gathered into one bunch again by Albert. Today was the day.to count.over 1000 sheep! This is one of those times when I really miss having Albert's Dad around. I have only started counting in the last four years or so. Usually I just fill in and try to keep up. The final numbers are attributed to Albert and his Dad. Uncle Bert used to say that counting the sheep wasn't that hard. "Count the feet and divide by four" he would say. I always felt better when he added "If that is too hard, count the ears. Then you only have to divide by two". So, the count begins. Bonnie stayed at camp with the kids. Counting sheep is NOT a multi-tasking kind of thing for me.no kids, no dogs, only sheep! Albert's job is to count the lambs and I count the ewes. Once we got the herd started they seemed to go really well. Our only real hang up came when the new pup kept getting in front of the counters and turning the sheep back on us. The good news for the day is my count, which I was fairly certain was right, was very close to what should have been there. The first good news since the stinking herder left us for the life of an illegal alien.