Tuesday, April 12, 2011

I only have eyes for ewe

A few weeks ago, a farmer friend (the lovely and knowledgeable Montana Jones of Wholearth Farmstudio) put out a call for volunteers for her annual naked sheep party and spa day.

To say I jumped at the opportunity is something of an understatement. While I think I responded to her request with a perfectly respectable, composed and dignified reply (something like, "I'd love to help out on shearing day -- thanks!"), inside I felt like a crazed school girl, waving her arm in the air while squealing to the teacher, "Pick me, pick me!"

Pick me she did, along with a motley crew of experienced and wannabe farming folks who were all crazy keen to help with with chasing, catching, wrestling, vaccinating, drenching (that was my job, and by the look on my face, I take my job very seriously ) and more wrestling of over 60 Shropshire Sheep in need of their spring haircut.

Photo credit: Karen Caruana, Porcupine Creek Farm

I came home tired, sore, deliciously smelly -- and over-the-moon happy. One day I'll be wrestling my own woolies but in the meantime, I had a great time sharing today with these ones.


Anonymous said...

Sounds like me... I volunteered to go help a local sheep rancher castrate and de-tail. I have 5 sheepies of my own, but I really want to help him, so I can learn. Love the picture of you. You are concentrating.

David said...

Fiona, those sheep are quick, agile, and can jump. I had to catch help a friend catch a couple just a week ago. Once they are on the ground they kind of give up but getting them to the submission state can be trying to say the least.

Have a great sheep sheering day.

fiona@fionacampbell.ca said...

@ Ruth -- I spend a lot of time reading about farm stuff but learning by doing is so much better - and so fun! I must have asked about 200 questions today... Even though I still have a long way to go, I learned so much!

@ David -- you're right about them being agile! Getting the smaller ones on their bums wasn't too hard (ok, it was easy for me because I wasn't doing it!) but the big mamas -- wow! There were about nine three-week-old lambs there too and they buzzed around like rockets!

Anonymous said...

Congrats on chasing your sheep, I mean, dream, and catching a bit of it!

Erin said...

How fun! I remember as a kid when my dad would shear and us kids were responsible for piling it into bags. He was so good at flipping them and our dog would stand there giving the sheep "the eye" in case they were thinking about any funny business LOL

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