As most of you know, Melissa and I moved the last group of horses to the new farm a couple of weeks ago, a year less a day from when the first group moved. One of the biggest changes and challenges involved in having everyone at the same place has nothing to do with horses. We now work together every single day instead of just on some days. This means we have had to re-learn how to work (and travel to and from work) together every day. Fortunately, we've had plenty of practice with this and after only a few days of icily quiet (or achingly loud) car rides we figured out how to create space for ourselves again.
One of the joys of our daily commute through a very pretty part of Tennessee is keeping track of what is going on at various places we drive by each day. Our conversations are punctuated with sentences like, "Look there ! Billy has his hay cut FINALLY !" and, "Gee, wonder what happened to the red cow that grazes at the crossroads every morning ? Haven't seen her in a few days." You can be sure that we notice when something changes, just as I am sure that our neighbours notice when something changes at our place.
On days when we choose to take the highway, just after we get off the interstate there exists a neat little little brick house with a field full of goats beside it. Of course both Melissa and I are big goat fans, and we've watched this little flock pretty carefully over the past year. One little goat in particular captured our attention a few months ago thanks to his over the top antics with his brothers, sisters and friends. His markings are also very distinctive; black with a big white belt around his middle and a bunch of black spots in the white belt. About two days after we started travelling to and from the farm together, the goat acquired a name. We call him Lyle. Every morning since his naming and again every evening we slow the car way down and try to spot Lyle among his friends. (Melissa here to mention that I said we should select a gender neutral name since there was a 50/50 chance of Lyle being a girl. Jason did not listen to me . . . not that ever does . . . !)
The day before yesterday we didn't have to look very hard to find Lyle because he and some of his friends had broken out of their enclosure and were standing squarely in the middle of the highway. I stopped the car as quickly and safely as possible and we both got out to shoo them off the road. When this was accomplished we pulled in the driveway and went to the house to let them know their goats had broken out. A nice lady answered the door and quickly put the goats back in their pen. When this was accomplished, we told her that we'd been watching her goats for the past year and that we'd even named some of them. She laughed hard when I pointed out Lyle because Lyle is a female and her name is Speckles. (Like I said Jason should learn to listen to my good advice . . . )
As it turns out, the lady keeps several mama goats and a couple of bucks as pets, and to keep from being completely over-run with goats she has to give some of their offspring away every now and again. In a rare twist of fate it turns out that Lyle/Speckles and some of her friends are free to a good home, and Lyle/Speckles is also a fainting goat. If you haven't already guessed where this is most likely heading you clearly don't know either of us very well.
Speaking of goats no that is not a gremlin in the picture below, it is Jo the fainting goat caught in the act of being naughty and trying to hide behind the trash can.
The morning view, it never fails to look beautiful to us
Lightening, Lucky and Noble
Thor and O'Reilly
Clayton and Stormy having a grooming session
Another morning view - a bunch of greys and a bay chowing down on the trees. George, Fonzi, Asterik (in the trees, hiding behind Fonzi), Silver and Gus enjoying some early morning gourmet leaves. Chimano opted for grass over leaves.
Gus, Winston and Faune
Chance and Leo
Traveller and Silky