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12 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS
4 H FRETTER-ER
A BUCK GROWS UP
ADAPTING
AGAIN, THE SKY IS FALLING
ALL YOU NEED IS ... CARDBOARD
AMANNAMEDJED
AND THEN IT GOT COLD
AND THEN IT WARMED UP TO ZERO
ANGRY GOAT FARMER
ANTIQUE GOAT FARMING
ANYTHING BUT THAT
ARE BUCKS EVER BABIES
AROMA THERAPY
ARTFUL DODGERS
ARTIC FRONT
AUTUMN BOQUET
B U B - B U B - B U B
BABY BACK EXCUSE
BABY MONITORS
BACK TO NATURE
BAIT
BARKING AT GOATS
BARN SOUR TRUCK
BATTERIES NOT INCLUDED
BE HAPPY
BEAUTY MISTAKES
BEHAVIORS
BEHIND THE GATE
BIG 10-4 GOAT FARMER
BIKINI WEDNESDAYS
BILLBOARD GOAT FARMING
BILLIES & STICKWEEDS
BLIZZARD OF 92
BLONDE GOAT FARMER
BLONDE HUMOR
BOTTLE BABIES
BOTTLE BABY TALK
BOTTLE BABY WITHDRAWAL
BOXING SUNBEAMS
BRONCHITIS.
BRUISE OR DIRT
BUCK LOVE
BUCKETHEAD
BUCKS IN STOCK
CALLING YOOOOU
CAN'T TOUCH THIS
CANE I DO IT?
CARPAL TUNNEL HAY
CATCHING PEARL
CHICK CHICK CHICORY
CHOCOLATE PLUM
CHRISTMAS KIDDING
CHUCK
COLD IS OUR FRIEND NOT
COUGH DROP WORMER
COUNTING
CRUMPLED
CUD CHEWING CONTENTMENT
DAYCATIONS
DEAR FAVORITE RELATIVE
DELOUSED
DOES ANYBODY REALLY KNOW ...
DOES ON KIDDING
DOWNSIZING
DRAMA QUEEN
DRENCHED!
DRESS FOR SUCCESS
DUCT TAPE.
DUMPSTER RAIDERS
EARPUGS
EGG SHELL MASSACRE
EMMITT
EMPTY NEST SYNDROME
EQUIPMENT OPERATORS - DANCERS
ESCAPE ARTIST
ESCORT SERVICE
FALLING SKY
FARM WALK
FARMER C S I
FEEL LIKE A NUT
FIRST IMPRESSIONS
FIRST LINE OF DEFENSE
FIRST YOU TAKE YOUR SOCK
FLOATING MUSHROOMS
FORKS IN THE ROAD
FULL OF BULL
G G
GATE ATTACK !!!!
GIRL WATCHER
GLIDING
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GOAT CELEBRATIONS
GOAT FARMER SONG
GOAT FARMER WEIGHT TRAINING
GOAT FARMER'S CREED
GOAT FARMING CAMP
GOAT HOLIDAY GIFTS
GOAT HUNTING
GOAT KLEENEX
GOAT LANGUAGE
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GOAT PROFILER
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GOATS RULE
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GOT RUNS?
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HAVE MILK WILL TRAVEL
HAVEN'T GOT A CLUE
HAY MONITOR
HE-BE-GEE-BE'S
HELP! HELP! HELP!
HELP! I'M IN THE BATHTUB
HELPING HOOVES
HERD OF TURTLES
HERE COMES KIDDING TIME - A CHRISTMAS TUNE
HOBBLE, HOBBLE
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HOW TO BUY GOATS
HOW YOU FEELING?
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I PREFER LONG EYE LASHES
I REALLY DO HAVE A HOME
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I'M A LITTLE TEAPOT
I'M STILL HERE?
INDIAN SUMMER
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INTERNET AUCTIONS
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IRON WILL
IT TOOK TWO
JINGLE BELL GOATS
JOKE - GET A JOB!
JOYFUL
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JUST 1 MORE GOAT
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LAST BUCK STANDING
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M. D. GOAT
MAD AGGIE
MANIPULATE WHAT?
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MAYBE THIS TIME
MEMBER ME
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NAMING GOATS
NANNY BERRIES ~ DEAR FAVORITE RELATIVE
NEW "KID" ... SHOWING
NEW HAY IN THE HOUSE
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NEW YEARíS RESOLUTIONS
NORMAL
OCTOBER KIDDING
ODE TO ODOR
OH, MY
OUCH
PANIC ATTACK!
PAW PAWS
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PHONE CLASS
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PLAYING DEAD
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PLOP
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PRO WRESTLER OR PUPPY
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PUTTING ON A SHOW
QUIPS & QUOTES
QUIPS-N-QUOTES II
REAP THE WILD WIND
RECORD KEEPING
REDNECK TANK TOP
REFEREE
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ROAD TRIP 2003
ROCK ON
ROLL'UM ROLL'UM
ROLLIN', ROLLIN', ROLLIN'
RUB DIRT ON IT
S-T-R-E-S-S
SANDWICHED
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SHOULD EVERYONE VOTE
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SONG OF THE FROG
SPIES, SECRET AGENTS, SPOOKS, AND OTHER GOATS
SSSNAKE
STAMPEDE!
STARGATE BOERS
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STEP BY STEP
STICK IT WHERE
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STUCK AGAIN
STUDENT ANALOGIES AND METAPHORS
STUPID IS...
SUNSHINE BOO BOO'S
SUPER HERO
SUPER SUCKERS
SUPPER AT SEVEN A.M.
SURVEY SAYS
SURVIVING KIDDING
SWASH - BUCKLING BUCKS
TAKING CARE OF BUSINESS
TALKING POCKETS
TATTOOING
THANK GOODNESS FOR MUD
THE $37.50 BUCK
THE 2003 DARWIN AWARDS
THE COWBOY WAY
THE DACHSHUND AND THE LEOPARD
THE DANGERS OF GUM BOOTS
THE FARM WOOKIE
THE FLYING GOATZANIES
THE FRAGRANCE OF HAY
THE GAME'S AFOOT
THE GOAT WHISPERER
THE MOB SQUAD
THE MORAL BUCK
THE PET CHICKEN
THE PIED PIPER
THE PLAN
THE SCARECROW GOAT SELLER
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THE TALKING GOAT
THE TARP ANNIHILATOR
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THE TICK
THE TRUTH ABOUT DOGS
THE V WORD
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THE WORM HAS TURNED
THEN THE KNEE DOCTOR SAID
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THURSDAY, THURSDAY
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TRUE LOVE
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UGH DAYS
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WAS THAT CHRISTMAS?
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WAY TO THE HEART
WEANING WEANERS
WEE GOAT FARMERS
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WHAT'D YOU SAY?
WHATSTH THISTH
WHEN LIFE HANDS YOU VEGETABLES.
WHERE'S THE BRAKES
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WRONG.TURN!
YOU CALL HIM WHAT?
YOU COME HERE, NO, YOU COME HERE, NOÖ
ZAPPED!
FORKS IN THE ROAD
by Connie S. Reynolds

autumnfarmsboers.com

LEE & CONNIE REYNOLDS
AUTUMN FARM
RAVENSWOOD, WV

If you are literal minded the way I am, you are now picturing all these forked eating utensils lying on the road. But, what we are really talking about is the forks in the road of lifeís great divided highways. Where we can take a wrong turn or a right turn (thatís "correct turn" for the literal minded) that will affect the rest of our life, or at least for the next few minutes. Iíve noticed that goats have the same forks.

Sure, their divided highway of life is basically a dirt path going through the woods or fields. But, they have to make life decisions too. I was reminded of this the other evening. Lee and I were walking in the field petting and admiring the goats when we heard a goat call out. Now this isnít unusual, but this particular goat was still up in the barn lot, by herself, standing behind a tree.

Now, Dot is an independent goat, but usually she isnít far from the herd. And, she didnít act particularly distressed about anything. Her call was more like a, "Hey, you!" Lee and I studied her for a minute or two from the field and shrugged and walked on. Who can fathom the mind of a goat, we decided.

She called again and she was pointedly looking at us. Odd. But, she wasnít acting bothered about anything. Lee got involved with straightening out a bit of fence and Dot called out to us again. Curious, I started walking towards her and the barn lot. It took a few minutes to get there and she didnít call out anymore because she saw I was coming to her.

As I got closer, I saw her predicament. She had walked down the hill from the goat barn, following all these slender young goats. They had gone through two locust trees that grew close at the base but had spread out away from each other, a fork in the road. The decision had to made whether to go around or follow the slender young girls through. In Dotís mind eye, just like so many of the rest of us, she considered herself a slender young thing. Not the matronly easy keeper that she really was. She got stuck.

Since the footing was down hill, she could not easily back up to get out of the fork of the trees and her belly wouldnít let her go forwards. She wasnít uncomfortable, but she was definitely stuck.

I called to Lee to see this goatís predicament. We both laughed a while, which being a goat, Dot didnít mind at all. She just patiently waited for us to do something. She knew we always took care of her and this wasnít any different then any other time, she thought. Lee had to lift up her front end and walk her backwards through the trees and then put her front feet back on the ground again.

She made the right decision then and walked around the trees and happily trotted off to be with the herd, her belly bouncing and jiggling in happy freedom. And, Iím sure she was still considering herself still a slender young thing, those trees just happened to grow closer together in the night, thatís all.

Another doe had made an error in judgment along the same line last year. She had been a slender young thing until she was 4 and ĺ months pregnant. And, these two trees that grew close together, along a wooded path back to the barn, she had walked through since she was a kid. Only this time when she tried to walk through, she was stopped dead by her big pregnant belly.

She couldnít figure this out. She had always gone through here before and just a couple of months ago at that. What was the problem? She backed up and tried again. She was stopped again. Puzzled, she backed up and tried again. Nada, still didnít work. She backed up and tried again. She was like a little wind-up toy that bumps into something and just keeps bumping into it.

Lee watched her a while to see if she would give up and simply walk around the trees. She didnít. Lee finally had to go and get hold of her head and turn her neck around the tree for her to walk on and catch up with the herd. She might have still been bouncing back and forth if Lee hadnít been there.

So goats have those life decisions to make, forks in the road, like their human caretakers. Take for instance a couple of bucks weíve had over the years. One day they are peacefully getting along with everyone and the next they are chasing me around the chicken house. Their fork in the road was whether to allow me to walk on by, go in peace, or decide that I needed to be put in my place.

Like the old knight in Harrison Fordís movie, The Last Crusades, said, "He chose poorly." Each of those bucks that had chased me around the chicken house had chosen poorly. Originally they had been called "Precious", "Sweet Baby Boy", or "Mommaís Punkin", now they are being called, "Goat Burger," "Goat Chops", and "Goat Tenderloin."

Forks in the road happen to the very young too. I watched a young doe kid the other day study our creek. Itís a smallish creek, maybe 10 foot wide in spots, high banks in most places. The water is shallow in most areas, 5-6 inches deep, but in some areas three feet deep. The goats pick the shallow areas to cross and they usually leap from rock to rock. This little girl decided she was in a big hurry. She didnít have time to go find a shallow place to cross. Besides, she was also "Mighty Doe", the fastest doe kid alive.

I watched her from the top of the hill. This tiny little kid studying the creek from the bank at one of the deepest parts of the creek. Now if she would have backed up and had made a running leap out and over, she could have done it. But she stood there and did a flat-footed leap, straight up.

Of course she dropped like a rock straight down. I heard a lot of splashing as I just about broke my neck to get down the hill to save her. But, she came cannoning out of that creek like a bat out of you know what, wet and sputtering, acting like a trap had been set for her. She had chosen poorly.

So, if you are one of those people who have taken the wrong fork in the road, think of the goat. At least you arenít stuck between two trees.

THE END

 

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