It Takes A While …

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March 502

Today was one of those carefree days that just seem to mosey on by … Ede was busy with her tutoree (she’s working with one of our neighbours who skips on over to our place every few days and brings a dose of youthful sunshine with her). That meant that the donk-a-lonks and I took our time getting the morning chores done.
March 504I would rake and scoop a section and then stop and scratch a patch. 😉 The bird song this morning was really something. Even the donkeys stopped every so often and watched the Blue Jay’s antics. The chickadees are now ‘grazing’ the paddock as carefree as any of the herd. I noticed them right at the hooves of both Darby and Bella – darting in to pick up a stray grain seed.
March 507Bella continues to ‘steal’ the most scratches. She just bumps even bigger Darby or Paco right out of the way to claim her spot. I have to laugh when she goes all slack jawed if you manage to find just the right itchy spot. It must almost be time to get out the shedding brushes. All four donkeys were sweating under their coats and eager to have some help ruffling their fur to get some fresh air. I think last night they all slept out under the stars on the straw bedding I’ve laid out in the front paddock. I found four ‘body prints’ there this morning.
March 516I love the parts of my day when I’m out doing chores. I keep stopping and taking deep breaths of fresh air. Have you noticed that air actually has a smell and a taste to it? And it is different in each season. I take long looks at the skyscape. Check out the snow level in the fields. Listen to the birds chattering in the trees. And I pinch myself … I’m really retired! I had a wonderful aunt – Helen – who was also an amazing educator. She was a lot of fun to be around at family gatherings… She died in her early fifties and didn’t get a chance to be retired. I remember visiting her after a surgery at the beginning of her illness. She was hoping to get through it and then retire and have time to spend the days with her husband and kids and family. When she didn’t make it I was quite shaken. From then on I kept a close eye on my own retirement date. I could easily have been the type of professional to work well past that time … but I was very conscious of how little we know about what time we have left.
March 503I loved being a teacher. The creative challenges were my favourite part of the job. And yet I am truly amazed at how happy I am to be spending my days in a completely different fashion. I’m enjoying the solitude. (Teaching is a highly social activity – people on people on people!) I’m loving the daily doses of fresh air.
March 508I like the workout of plowing and shovelling the snow. Perhaps a little less in March than in December! 😉 I like belonging to a herd that speaks only with body language. Hmmm… I suppose there are a few voices … especially when I come out each afternoon with four bowls of carrots.
March 514I like walking down the Bully Road into the back paddock with sweaty gloves and rosy cheeks. I leave the donkeys to their mid-day naps and head inside myself for a few hours of computer work and reading. And then … I head back out and do it all again. I’ve found my second calling. I’m one happy donkey loving hermit!

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