Sunday, February 7, 2010

A Break In The Rain

Thank goodness we're finally getting a much needed break in the rain. We've all been suffering from severe cabin fever around here. I desperately need to get outside and walk. My backside is forming in the shape of a chair. I'm not sleeping well because I'm not getting enough exercise, and I'm not feeling or looking all that great either. At least cold weather clothing can hide some of these winter stores I'm packing around my thighs.
Why does the weather have to come in such extremes anyway? I know we need the rain and all- the lake needs it, the farmers need it, the dry fields need it, but it feels like it's been raining for weeks with barely a break. The earth couldn't even soak up the constant flow, and there's a pond of mud in my front yard. My chicken coop has a leak, and while the hens are dry on their perches, the muck on the floor is really gross- grosser than your normal chicken coop, which is disgusting. My goats have been standing at the door of their houses looking out and maaaaing pitifully as if they will melt in the rain, and looking like they are about to sprout mold. I'm not complaining because by the time summer is here, and we've been baking in the sun for months, and my well is struggling to give us enough water, I will be craving a little moisture in the air, but this has been a whole lotta moisture- and it just kept coming.

So, a little patch of blue sky was a very welcome sight. I stepped outside, and could literally feel the vitamin D improving my mood. The kids, dogs, goats and I were out all enjoying the property when we found ourselves all the way down the hill by the creek, and suddenly in the mood to explore things on the other side of the gate. I didn't want to waste any of my precious outside time by going back in to get leashes or some grain to lure the goats back in, and decided to trust that it would be fine. Hiking all the way back to the house to get my animal control systems in place would put a damper on the moment. The animals usually listen to me...well, sometimes they do. They love me and they'll follow me- who needs all that paraphernalia? In hindsight I wonder, why do I do these things to myself?
At first, the walk was lovely. Everyone was thrilled to be out- goats greedily gobbling grass and brush, dogs running full speed ahead through puddles- kids climbing logs and blabbering about who knows what. Then, I noticed the big dog was missing. We called, and after a few minutes, he came barreling across the creek from an area where we found the remains of what appeared to be a cat a few weeks ago, just as happy as he could be. We had buried the cat parts, but judging by the look and smell of the dog, he had dug them up, and had a nice roll. And I had just gone through the ordeal of washing his 130 pounds of stinky fur a week ago.

While this was happening, none of us were watching the goats, who decided to take the opportunity to wander out to the road. We called, but without grain to lure them, they pretty much just ignored us. I tried pretending I had something for them to eat in my pocket, but they just looked at me like I was lame. That's pretty insulting coming from a goat.

Enter my yapping terrier to help out by running around the goats biting their ankles causing them to buck their horns and run even further away. After nearly an hour of attempts, which included a tad bit of cursing on my part, we were finally able to round up the goats back on to our property.

I really should make sure to never do that again.

The forecast is calling for another day of sunshine before the rain comes back, so we'll be outside enjoying it for sure- this time with dog leashes and goat grain on hand.