Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the paddock.. - Tactical Ninja
Nov. 18th, 2013
10:08 am - Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the paddock..
Pet lambs. Everyone thinks they're cute - except people who've had them. Those people know them to be entitled little shits who will maraud you until you give up the goods - in this case, milk - and will not give up. Ever.
It's probably some evolutionary survival thing. They do the same to their mums if they have one - it's commonplace to see two lambs, almost as big as the ewe, one each side with their heads underneath, bunting away and almost lifting her back end off the ground as they try to get more milk from her while she wears this longsuffering look of resignation.
So imagine my distress when I saw this seemingly innocent little chap coming for me..
I should have run..
Instead I tried to get a picture.
Until... dun dun.. dun dun.. DUN DUNDUNDUDNDUDNDUDNDUDUN!
After he had been pried off me with a crowbar and distracted by the application of a rubber ring to his nethers, I shore the rest of his flock. He lost his Mum with sleepy sickness, but he's not short of ovine companionship. His owners are contemplating how to make him not like people as he gets older. I say good luck to them.
While I was shearing this mob, I had my first breakdown while using an electric handpiece. Some wool got sucked into one of the vents (poor design?) and tangled around the drive shaft of the motor, which made it groan and wobble and generally be sad. I took it apart and removed the wool, but on putting it back together it was still groaning and wobbling. It might have been misaligned brushes, but my realignment of them yesterday didn't fix it, so it's off to the Fixit Folks to make it better.
Luckily, the people I was working for had one of their own that they use for dagging, and they let me borrow it to finish their sheep and also the ones down the road.
Presenting, the typical lifestyle flock:
So that'd be a mix of mongrel-bred sheep that contain various proportions of Romney, Suffolk, Pitt Island Merino, and Gotland, and have bred down through the generations to be mostly licorice allsorts. In fact, this one (who I reckon should be called Loaf):
Is actually called All Sorts If You Don't Mind. Longest sheep name ever. And she was a bit miffed about the whole affair, too. While I was shearing these, the neighbour came over and told me he had two and he'd just spent an hour and a half running round the paddock after them to get them in, and would I PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE come shear them because his wife would have his neck if she got home and they were still woolly.
You see this is why I see the shearing as a communtiy service! ;-) So anyway, they got done and I returned the handpiece to its owners and then came home and spent my day's shearing money on a new handpiece. I've been thinking about getting a second one for a while, because breakdowns happen and it's always good to have a spare. TradeMe (NZ equivalent of EBay) has a distributor selling cheap and powerful ones, so I grabbed one of those. I don't expect it to be the same quality as my main one, but it'll tide me over.
So now I own four handpieces. Two traditional machine-driven ones, one of which I've never used but came free with Boris The Recalcitrant Petrol Shearing Plant; and two electric ones that will shear far more sheep than they were ever built for.
Meanwhile this year, I'm keeping a running tally of how many sheep I shear. I've never done that before. So far it's 99. In traditional shearing gangs, doing a tally that ends in 99 is called dying in the hole, and you are supposed to shout beer for the rest of the gang. Since I am the rest of the gang and I don't drink, I'm going to flout tradition and instead buy myself some fish and chips or something. Yep.
Oh wait, I'd forgotten Michelle's Polwarths. That brings my tally to 123. So I'm safe. Might get the fnc anyway...
Also, my 10 year anniversary on LJ was on the 15th. As usual, I forgot. More importantly, my 5 year anniversary with Dr Wheel is coming up soon. *goes to look it up* OK so it was December the 7th. Here is my post from the following day. Funnily enough, it's also mostly about sheep.
So what should we do for our anniversary? Suggestions we have tossed around so far include:
- Going to the Bahamas, Fiji and Tutukaka (not all at once)
- Having an up close and personal chimpanzee experience at the zoo (sadly they only do cheetahs, lions, giraffes, red pandas and meerkats)
- Him making me dinner and me ironing his shirts (because we're that domestic and suburban these days)
- Having lots of Teh Sex
- All of the above?