Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Fleece Navidad!

Hope ya'll had a great Christmas. 
We trailed sheep today, which I'll tell you all about in a few days, but for now I wanted to share with you our sheep trailing about a week ago. 

We've been at this a little over two years now. Lambing, shearing, trailing sheep, cold winters, late nights, cold mornings, etc.

At what point do these everyday activities become the norm? For me, it seems like they may never. J asked me Friday night, "Are you all ready to trail tomorrow?"

At that very instant, I had knots in my stomach and was full of anxiety. I just don't understand why I get anxious and worried. We are out of feed here and need to start heading south for the winter. We were hoping to stay where we were for a few more weeks, but it was just too dry and there was little feed left. So, trailing it is. 

Saturday morning, we wake up bright and early and look outside. It's snowing and it's so, very cold.

Here we've been praying for snow for weeks and today of all days we get this...

Upper Left: Right before we got on the road. That is the fence the sheep came out of.
Upper Right: Animals always line up at the fences to see the sheep come thru. It's so neat.
Lower Left: It didn't budge from 25 degrees the entire trail.
Lower Right: The sheep coming down their last hill. They are about 100 ft from the gate to the pasture.

I didn't dare wish it away, but it reminded me of a saying I heard once, "Farmers and Ranchers are never quite happy. There will always be too much moisture, not enough moisture or moisture at the wrong time." It's definitely a love-hate (def more love) type of relationship.

Even though the trail today was a shorter one (only 9.5 miles), doesn't mean it was easier than others. However, it's made a bit easier when you have good help! Like the help we get from these two.

I'm a little late to introduce these two (we'll call them L&T), we've been friends for over a year now and they really are the most amazing individuals J and I have ever had in our lives. Truly. Our mutual love of In-N-Out is what brought us together, but so much more keeps us together.

L&T helped us at a tricky intersection today and it went smooth - they are awesome trailers. Pretty much professionals at this point.

The three of us were stopping cars at the intersection and while I work on stopping a motorist, I find that she is one of 'those people'. Let me define this a bit better...

There are three types of people that you run into while trailing sheep. There are the "Lovers" who enjoy driving thru the sheep. They take pictures, smile, sometimes stop to chat and a few will even turn around for seconds.

Then you have the "Grumps". These are the people that grumble thru the sheep and most likely thru everything else in life.

Then you have "Those People".  These are the people that think it's the most horrible, awful, most miserable thing to drive thru the sheep. These people don't slow down, they speed up and honk their horn because sheep know what the sound of a horn means.
I mean really, is driving thru sheep really that bad?

Anyway, as I'm stopping this motorist, I realize it's a postal service worker. I said, "Mam, would you mind stopping here for just a few minutes? The sheep are coming thru."

To which she replied in a panicked tone, "But, I have the mail!"

Oh!! Well, in that case go right on thru. I'll just let the sheep know you have some important deliveries to make. I'm sure it won't be a problem. Let me part the seas right now!
I shook my head and promised her it would be less than 3 minutes. She seemed okay with that.

After the intersection, it was a breeze. About an hour later the sheep were where they needed to be. They'll stay in this pasture for 2 weeks.

Unless it snows, of course...then we'll need to keep heading south. Love-hate I tell you...

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