Once again, not only do I find myself a goat farmer, but also a twitchy hanky. Itís not just with the baby girls, but also the older does. In the evenings, when I find the house just too hot and the barn too hot, Iíll walk up in the hills carrying a sitting bucket to sit in the shade. This is also to get my weanlings to go places on the hill that they just havenít got the nerve to go yet.
After all, there can be big bad boogers in those hills, like one of the barn cats suddenly jumping out of the brush while chasing a field mouse or chipmunk. That can cause instant stampedes among the baby goats. They either charge to me, forgetting to stop, or go charging over the hill to the barn. A few minutes later they return to me, cautiously walking up the hill, poking their heads around things to make sure all is clear and that it is once again safe to be there.
Now, what makes me a twitchy hanky is that I never know for sure when the babies stampedes are going to happen. I want to protect that new knee I have now, but I also need to protect the old knee so it wonít be necessary to get a new knee there too. So, as I walk, I find myself flinching every time the brush shakes a bit from the breeze or babies think they see imaginary boogers. I know that more than likely they will run to me and the kids are a dab above knee level, and that they will run into my legs.
The hanky part is when the babies are nibbling on things on the hillside and accidentally root their noses into something they find particularly nasty. They stand there and do their baby snorting, trying to get the offensive thing or smell off their noses. Then they look around and see me there and hurry over to wipe their noses on my pant leg. To them, I am the walking hanky.
Iíve noticed that this also carries over into their adulthood. I can walk out into the big herd of grown adults, no matter the age, from two years to ten or more, they can accidentally rub their nose into something that they arenít particularly happy about, then they hunt me down and clean their noses off on my pant leg.
Iíve been seriously considering hanging a large beach towel over a partition so they can go to that to wipe their noses. But, I think they would still think that a walking hanky is so much handier. So, it might not be as popular as I would hope it would be.
Iíve seemed to have accepted my fate though. Last night, one of the weanlings rooted her nose into the ground and came up snorting something fierce. She just stood there snorting loudly, scaring the other kids who thought she was sounding a warning for them to run, they just didnít know where to run to. I knew where they would eventually run, right into my legs. So, I hurried over and offered my pant leg. She vigorously rubbed her nose and everyone settled down. Thanks to being a walking, twitching hanky, I had averted a stampede that would have bumped into my legs.
Now, one thing Iíve noticed is that Iím able to protect myself at times with my sitting bucket. Iíve gotten so Iíll go get Leeís camouflage hunting bucket that has a padded revolving seat. Itís a slick idea, padded seat on a bucket that actually twirls around. Iím not sure of the purpose in this, unless you are comfortably sitting out in the woods with your trusty rifle, twirling around, and are able to spot deer more effectively. But, it would seem to me that if you shot that rifle while sitting on that bucket, you would effectively knock yourself over backwards from the kick of the gun. Iím not a hunter, but the camouflage hunting bucket with a padded seat doesnít seem that sturdy. I know the babies can easily knock me over backward with just a small stampede.
Whatever, that wonderful padded seat on a bucket is still a great idea and as I walk up or down the hills, I can use the bucket to put in front of me or to the side or back when a stampede starts. I stick that bucket between me and the stampeding baby girls and they tend to try and go around me and not bump into the shielding bucket.
Anyway, sitting on a padded seat bucket on a hillside, in the shade, with no imminent stampedes, life is very good. A slight breeze and things are idyllic with baby goats grazing nearby. Of course, every now and then one of the baby girls has to come up to get a petting. I was in just such a mellow mood last night that when a beautiful baby girl came hurrying up to me, doing her baby talk to say hello, I opened my arms wide to give her a big hug and she bit my hand. Of course, what was I thinking. It was baby Bitiní Sugar Cube. Sheís starting to grow out of taking chunks out of people, but every now and then she forgets and I forget what her full name is.
My fault, and as I stood up to leave, another baby girl came over and cleaned her nose off real good on my pant leg. The rest charged over as I started down the hill, doing happy mock stampedes, me nervously keeping an eye on them and twitching when any got too close in their wild runs. When I got to the field to head to the barn, they sadly watched me go because they hated a good hanky to walk away, and back they stampeded up the hill because they had spotted some delicious weeds.
I wanted to go check on the yearling herd. You never know, someone may need a good twitchy hanky over there.