tatjna (tatjna) wrote,


The sheep, who can apparently recognise faces and remember them for years amongst other things, obviously recognise mine. And every time they see my face, something's up. Something that involves dark sheds, noisy smelly machines, being wrestled to the ground and having a hot buzzy thing applied to their bodies, and then being colder than before. Maybe having something hard and metal shoved down their throats, complete with a squirt of something that tastes like ass boiled in sock.

When I appear they don't just waltz down the hill after the bucket the way they do any other time. Instead they turn into dodging, flighty, more-cunning-and-faster-than-a-human-and-they-know-it unguided ballistic missiles. Add to this that about half of them have lambs less than a week old and had to be left behind, and that I'd left my whistle at home, and, well.. I did a lot of running. Without my whistle I can't steer my dog. She still has 'run' and 'stop' but any racing car driver will tell you how useful that is for doing formula one, right? I never put vocal sides on her because she didn't need them. But that was before I stopped shepherding, got out of the habit of carrying a whistle, and got all townified and unthinking.

However, after only one false start that involved a complete lap of the paddock and back to where we started, First cottoned to what I was trying to do and started to work by herself. My dog may be about as smart as a pudding most of the time, but she's a sheepdog and on the sheep she makes Lassie look like she's been lobotomised. Once the gate was open, it was just a matter of getting myself in position and letting First do her thing. And watching First do her thing makes my heart go all poundy and mushy.

It did take twice as long as it should've though, and I probably walked 5 miles up and down the road with various mobs of sheep (my client is selling all her dry and uncoloured ewes, and most of her rams, so there were three mobs to take to the yards and sort). I caught far too much sun, missed the picnic and got a bit dehydrated.

But then I got home and hung out with richdrich while he drilled and hammered, and added some more colour to my hair, and relaxed and khaybee and danjite gave me meat and I feel good.

It was a perspective kind of day. I've been having a few health problems and I'm pissed off about it because I'm normally so damn healthy. But you know, I spent all day running around the hills with my dog, mustering sheep and enjoying the outdoors. These are not the pursuits of an unhealthy person. Lots of people wouldn't be capable of doing that.

So yeah, perspective. I has it.
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