Saturday, January 27, 2007

The day started out leisurely enough. I finished reading Ralph Steadman's Joke's Over that my best friends, Therese and Lorna, sent me for Christmas. It's about his forty-five year collaboration and friendship with Hunter S. Thompson. I cried at the end. I really miss knowing that HST is still roaming the planet being reckless with firearms and writing while intoxicated. Mostly, I loved their relationship. I loved how Steadman described it. They really loved each other in the way that people do over decades. Not everyone in this world was cut out to be HST's best friend.

That was the last intellectually stimulating thing to happen to me today. And that was at 9 AM. Since then, I've been thoroughly slimed with afterbirth, baby goat pee, more afterbirth, name it. There isn't a bodily fluid a goat is capable of producing that I haven't had smeared on me.

I had a doctor's appointment today. I got all dressed up to go out. I went up to the shelters to check on the babies. The three doe kids were all accounted for, but Maggie's freakishly large kid, who I've started thinking of as "Kidzilla" is gone. Maggie knows he's gone and is baaing most pitifully.

She follows me as I walk around looking for him. We even go back in the woods. He's no where.

I'm pissed at Maggie and keep a running commentary on her sucky mothering skills as the two of us search.

"I knew I should have taken him from you last night. You were dragging him all over the damn farm and him not even a day old. What were you thinking, you inconsiderate frickin' cow?"

It's evidently a great and terrible slur to call a goat a cow.

"Blaaaah." She says. I can hear the guilt in her voice. Damn straight.

She even goes the extra mile to look even deeper into the forest for him.

Normally, if he were stuck somewhere he'd bleat for help and I could find him. But Kidzilla is nowhere. I resign myself that some wild beast has taken Kidzilla off in the night while Maggie was out drinking and whoring at whatever the goat version of a crack house might be.

So I trudge back down to the house to get my keys and make off to town. As I'm heading down the driveway, there is Pearlie. She has a three foot long rope of mucous hanging out of her rear end.

I turn the jeep around and run into the house, stripping my dress off as I hit the porch. Call the doctor to reschedule and throw on my turtleneck and sweatpants. By the time I get to where I saw Pearlie, she is no longer there. Great.

I trudge back up to the shelter. No Pearlie. I start calling her and she answers back. She sounds really frantic.

She has found a spot over by one of the wood piles that I burned out last year. It's covered in nice soft leaves and is sheltered. It even has a log for me to sit on.

She has just dropped a freakishly large buck kid to replace the one we just lost. Super great, damnit. He's the spitting image of Leonard but a wee bit lighter. I help clean him up and get the mucous out of his nose and mouth. I didn't bring a towel with me so I'm using the sleeve of my turtleneck.

Then Pearlie starts to groan again and plops down. Another kid comes sliding out. This one is jet black with tan points and thankfully is a little doe. She's covered still in the sack she came out in. There seems to be an awful lot of slimy stuff. I break the sack and let her gurgle her first breath. Again I use my sleeves to wipe the copious amounts of slime from her little face. It's a real mess.

The little boy is already struggling to his feet at this point. He's emerged with a thick luxuriant coat. I pick up the little black doe out of her puddle of mucous and bring her around to Pearlie's head so she can finish the licking off part. No way am I going to do that.

The entire herd has gathered to watch. Maggie is still up there blah-ing away guiltily. Betty-Goat, who lost her kid, watches almost hungrily. She really wants to be a mommy and every time a kid comes near her, she gives it a good smell to see if maybe, just maybe, this is her baby.

After the two kids have their first drink of colostrum, I pick them both up and we all trudge back to the house with the entire herd following us.

I wasn't expecting Pearlie to drop first. I had her on the porch but after checking her tendons, I let her back out and brought Nod up here. Nod is most certainly very close. I may be up all night waiting on her.

Back at the house, I get Pearlie a nice warm bucket of molasses tea which she drinks all the way to the bottom. I get her some alfalfa. The babies are wobbling around in the sunshine. It's warmed up quite a bit from the teens we had this morning.

I milk Maggie, then worm her and vax her. I take all of her milk since she no longer has Kidzilla. I help Pearlie up on the milkstand and draw off some colostrum. I'm going to need that for Nod's baby who I plan to snatch. I worm and vax Pearlie while she's up there and give her a good feed of milk ration. The babies get their navels trimmed and painted with strong iodine.

I'm pretty damn tired about now. It's five o'clock and I haven't had anything to eat. But I go up to the shelter to check on the triplets. They are fine and I'm shocked at how strong they are now. They are still sleeping a lot, but are really lively and prancy. And can almost get away from me now.

I go back down to the house and take the babies inside while I get the dogs fed. I look up toward the shelter and there is Kidzilla with Maggie. She has done nothing to find him...he's just come home on his own.

Where the hell does a two day old baby goat go when he runs away from home? Where has he been all day? Is there some sort of Chucky Cheese's for goats that I don't know about? Did freakin' Maggie drop him off a daycare?

He's really hungry and that is just too damn bad since I've milked Maggie out. I'm sure she'll drop more for him now that he's back, but that was just the damnedest thing.

So, it's getting really cold tonight. We will have snow and sleet Saturday night. I'm hoping to get Nod's kids delivered by tomorrow. The new babies are spending the night inside the house....with diapers on. Pearlie is hanging out outside. They are the eating, sleeping, pooping, peeing things that all babies are.

But while I've been writing has been asleep on my lap. And that's really sweet.

1 Comment:

  1. Anne Johnson said...
    OMG, I am so glad I found this blog! You are making me so glad the goat judge thing was something I made up. I take care of baby kittens, but it's never as blucky as what you just described so well. You ought to write a book. And I'm totally serious about that. LOL! Mother goat at the crack house, kid at Chucky Cheese! LOLOL!

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