Category: Spring

Ought Not

Yesterday I started the day with a grand bicycle tour – my favourite loop – a 45 km trip. First big bike ride of the season. Along this route I like to stop at Second Depot Lake for a snack. It was gorgeous. Cool wind – sunny skies – sparkling water … bliss!

Reminded me that I am looking forward to the maiden voyage of my kayak – soon! I still have to come up with a name for her. And it won’t be ‘Yellow Banana’! 😉

When I got home I found pretty much everyone else was where they ought not to be! A flash of black fur brought my attention to the goat woods – where Bella was racing over the rocky hillside. She realized I was home and was calling for me to help her get out. Who knows how long she had been up there?

She was able to get up there by going through the goat house … but when she tried to come back out she was too unsure of the pile of logs at their landing. (Logs that I put there purposefully to discourage she or Rosie from taking that exit … Hmmm … seems there need to be logs on both side of that door!) I went up into the woods and opened the ‘Moon Gate’.

I wanted Bella to come out … May was more concerned that Rosie not go in! Ha! Sooooo complicated! I decided to leave that gate open and wander farther into the woods. Likely everyone – goats and donkeys – would follow.

It is absolutely luscious up there this week. All that new green growth. I’m wary of what June and July will look like. Those gypsy moths are at work in those tall trees … They have already been rotten luck. Two weeks ago I woke up one morning to an itchy red blotchy rash all over my arms, my neck, and around one of my eyes. Yikes! Thinking it was poison ivy I broke out the steroid creme and called my doctor. I have a terrible time with poison ivy. Lasts forever – and can really get out of hand. When I realized it was on my face … I figured I’d better pull out the big guns. The rash still kept spreading – my belly, my back, my legs … It wasn’t blistering? I was relieved to discover a couple of days later that I was one of MANY people in our area with the same condition. It was a reaction caused by the irritation of the tiny hairs on the hatching caterpillars. With prednisone and antihistamines I managed the worst of it and now it is fading. Looks like tiny buckshot bruising everywhere. Geesh!

The flerd followed me up into the woods. Bella found her way out of the goat woods – and all was well… until the reigning Bad Girl – aka Auntie Mary (yes YOUR namesake Mary Pearce!) – learned to duck under the woods fence line to head for the brush pile that divides us from the fair grounds.

The chickens love to range up in the woods. There are good eats up there. Normally they stay well clear of the fence line. The ‘other side’ is dark and cluttered with branches and logs and vines. It makes a green barrier between the park fence line and the habitat for our critters. Years ago when I started to use the woods this way I realized I needed a way to shield the donkeys from people hanging out at the new playground… built soooooo close to our fences … So I’ve hung a black privacy screen all along the fence line I built about eight feet from our true fence line. Makes a ‘moat’ of sorts. On our side – the playground disappears – on their side – there is no view of critters grazing in the woods. And no intelligent chicken would want to hang out there… But Auntie Mary is either incredibly brave … or … well … ignorance is bliss. 😉 I kept muttering over the top of the fence – ‘Get back here you silly thing. I’m NOT climbing in there…’ When I DID climb in – and blundered my way through the bramble – she disappeared! Back to OUR side… Lesson learned … by ME.

This is Mary – on the proper side of the fence – photo taken by me teetering on a tree branch from the wrong side of the fence! She also has figured out how to get into the back field … into the front yard … and does a wicked sprint for the hay barn when she sees me opening that door. This girl is constantly on a quest for trouble (or adventure …) 😉

There are great hawthorne bushes up there that both the jennies and the goats love to nibble on. Funny that they don’t clean those trees of their leaves. They only go that far in the fall …

It sure is a great place to stand in a good northwest wind. I love the sound of the wind in the leaves. LEAVES! Makes the woods sound like the lakeshore. I’ve got the electric fencing ready to open the back field for grazing. Just waiting until that grass gets a bit longer. That will mean new sugar is far down the stems … not in Rosie’s belly.

I keep pinching myself – finding it magical that it is THIS time of year again. We are surrounded by a sea of green. Looks great – sounds great – smells great.

And according to the critters – it tastes great too! Happy spring everyone!

P.S. It SNOWED in these parts today!! Bizzaro! Didn’t stay – thank goodness.