Not surprisingly, I have a lot of explaining to do. Firstly, I have been MIA on my blog. I believe this is an annual occurrence - I spend all that time whining about winter and it will never end (blah, blah, blah), then it does pretty much end and I'm all, "OMG, I have too much to do! I don't know where to start! Where's my blankie???" and no writing gets done. I am officially kicking myself in the keester and getting back into somewhat regular posting - like it or not.
Then there is the Dexter excuse. (Like how I threw that in, all nonchalant-like?) Some days it is downright dangerous to do simple things. Like go visit my cows and get milk. I haven't been for a while, as the bronchial thing had me down and out and not wanting to spread it around. But, a week ago, I tottered down to the barn to give my Jasmine a good head scritching (she loves it) and go kiss her daughter, Alice, on her big wet nose (she is not sure whether she likes it - but she doesn't hate it). My farmer was acting rather odd - sort of jumpy. He waits until his farmhand (using the term loosely) goes off out of earshot and then hisses in my ear, "I NEED TO TALK TO YOU!" Good lawd. Whatever? So, I trot after him as he moves the milking units from cow to cow, until he finally decides we are safe and he can speak.
"Alice had a bull calf." I am disappointed, because we always hope for a heifer, but, since she was field bred to an Angus bull, there wasn't much excitement in the heifer department this year anyway. "Well," I say, "isn't that nice." I should have wheeled around and gone blissfully on my way, but he continued. "It's going to be a week before I can go to the auction and C insists he wants to raise that calf for beef!" C is his erstwhile farmhand, who is also a relative. Therein lies the rub, as it is saideth. "I'm NOT going to let him have it because he's a butthead and doesn't know his ass from his elbow." No argument here. "So, YOU have to take him home." WHA?
That is how it came to be that Dexter moved into my barn. The sheep look upon him with terror - he's an alien that has landed in their midst. Of course, he's too young to mix with the lard butts, and is still on a bottle, so he is safely ensconced in a small pen in the barn. Yes, that's right. A bottle baby. A BIG bottle baby. A BIG, BOUNCY bottle baby. So far, he has been melded into the chore schedule without too much trouble. Other than those damn big calf bottle nipples - geezloueeze, they're a bugger to get on. My laundry load has doubled, as I am covered with slobber and milk replacer by the end of the day. He gets banded next weekend and I am hoping that will slow him down a bit. And I am working really, really hard not to get attached.
As I sat last night, poking around in my fevered brain, trying to find the Pollyannaism in of all this, I realized that I had built a sort of chute in the barn that I could use for the sheep in the future. It's a rather pathetic Pollyannaism, but it will do.