Monthly Archives: September 2019

Old sights, new tastes, new sounds

On Saturday we hiked to the arch again with some different folks who had never been there before. Once again we brought Finn and Sputnik as our faithful beasts of burden. None of these folks had hiked with goats before.

We picnicked under the arch as usual where the goats managed to politely finagle some food scraps off of our innocent and naive friends. This was Sputnik’s first experience with peanut butter. He liked it but he was bothered by the way it stuck to his lips and tongue. He’d eat a piece of PB&J, then rub his lips up and down along the log, then try another piece, then rub and rub some more. Janie eventually took her napkin and wiped his lips for him which was very amusing.

Finn wasn’t too interested in food but Alane really wanted to feed him something so she tempted him over with an almond butter biscuit. He didn’t end up tasting it, but he had to at least give it a token smell.

I love how Finn and Alane are making the same face here.

When we got home from our hike there was a mysterious package in the mail addressed to Buster Brown. I opened it up and found a small goat bell from Steve and Marianne! Buster Brown did not go on the hike with us, but we let him wear the bell for our daily walk that evening before putting it away for safekeeping. He looks very proud of it!

Werewolf Attacks Stanchion

We HAD two stanchions. I have a big metal stanchion I bought a few years ago because my boys (and most of my girls) outgrew the smaller wooden stanchion for daily milking purposes. But the small wooden stanchion still got used on a daily basis and was a nice little workhorse.

Not any more.

Last week Pluto and Daisy came in with porcupine quills in their faces. Daisy’s weren’t too bad and since she’s smaller I was able to pull the quills out while Phil held her down. Pluto was another matter. Not only did he have a lot more quills, but they were more deeply imbedded, and he had scratched and clawed at them to the point where quite a few of the ones inside his mouth were broken off. There was no way to hold down a dog that size by force, so I put him on the wooden stanchion, locked his head in, and got to work. We were doing pretty well but my pliers were too clumsy to grip some of the smaller, broken-off quill stumps. I ran into the house to grab my assortment of needle-nose jewelry pliers and some hemostats. I thought I could leave Pluto safely on the stanchion for a few minutes, but apparently I was wrong.

I came outside to find Pluto running loose and the headpiece on my little wooden stanchion turned to matchwood. He had literally gnawed his way out of it. It looked like a werewolf had got hold of it! I knew he had powerful jaws, but the way he splintered my stanchion in just a few minutes has given me new respect for those teeth! That board was almost 4 inches wide. Yikes!

Colorado State Fair 2019

Last weekend Phil and I attended the Colorado State Fair, and I have to say it was the best time we’ve had at Fair in a long time. We were there three days: Saturday, Sunday, and Monday. We only brought two goats, Rita and Skeeter, so it was a low-key weekend of showing. We got to see all the sights and take in all the shows. We even splurged and bought tickets to the ferris wheel one night!

The highlight of the weekend was this guy. We found him lying at the back of the cattle barn on Saturday, and I could not get over those enormous horns! I’m always impressed by the African Watusi cattle, but I had never seen one this massive before.   

Phil and I set up the goat obstacle course on Saturday night. Turnout was not quite as big this year, but it’s always a fun crowd pleaser nonetheless. I competed with Rita and she did not do very well, but we still came in second place. Phil and Skeeter were somewhere near last.

The youth costume class was woefully under-attended. This was the only contestant, but her costume was outstanding and I’m guessing she would have won even if she’d had some competition.

This lovely señorita went all-out for the adult costume contest. She was a piñata sales-lady, and her little Nigerian Dwarf kid was dressed as one of the piñatas. After the class, the lady hung one of her piñatas up in the show ring for the kids to swing at. (It was not the goat piñata!) She was the deserving winner of the adult competition.

This goat deserved a prize for its extreme patience. They showed up early for the costume class and had to wait through the obstacle competition. This goat never complained about that massive saddle or laid down or tried to rub it off.

Phil and I donned our Chinese outfits and dressed our goats up in a lion dance costume. Unfortunately one of the goats stepped on the sheet, Rita tripped and went down, and the whole costume ripped right down the middle. Skeeter was afraid of her lion head and wasn’t walking very well anyway, so our lovely lion dance parade ended in a shambles, but it got us all laughing. 

Next day I discovered that the incredible Watusi steer that had so fascinated me the day before was actually one of the attractions! For $15 you could sit on “Oliver’s” back and get your photo taken! I could not pass up the opportunity to ride such a magnificent animal. He was not only enormous, but he was incredibly gentle and a real ham for the camera. Every time the camera pointed at him, Oliver lifted his head and bared his bottom teeth in a big, cheesy grin. Yee-haw!

On Monday, Oliver actually competed in the Watusi show. His owner, the gentleman in the cowboy hat, took the blue ribbon in showmanship (I’m not sure what the lavender ribbon was for). I am not surprised they won showmanship. Oliver and his owner work together beautifully.