Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Wrangling sheep and peeping eggs - life begins its cycle anew

After a long, bleak, if mild, winter and several posts heralding an early spring, we kicked off the season in earnest Sunday with our biggest sheep wrangling day to date. Friends came from all across the island and of course our steadfast urban pals made the trek across the water - this is really their day, after all. I conveniently injured my back on Friday so was relegated to kitchen and party duty, but Mark and Michael and Jan and Judith rolled up their sleeves and jumped into the muck to make sure our gals got their vitamins, had their feet de-yuckified, received their worming meds, and got sheared in preparation for (hopefully) babies on the way. Ellen and I got caught up up in the "big house" while making sure the hungry and thirsty hordes would not be disappointed at day's end.

By the time friends of friends had arrived, it was 20 was dinner, with kids running amok and grown-ups feeling pretty darn smug about a good day's work and the feast to come. We supped on simple snacks and fresh, hot crab cakes, bread and pita just out of the oven, Mark's now truly famous hummus, and locally raised beef over mostly homegrown and local greens. Good company, hard work, cheap wine, and excellent vittles.

Hard to complain.

Many of guests commented on the project going on simultaneously in the little downstairs shower - yes, those really are eggs we're hoping turn magically into chickens and by the way it's any day now.

Well, today is the day. At least for the first round. Having no idea how spunky our lone rooster has been of late, we agreed to be thrilled with any and all live beings to emerge within the ridiculous looking styrofoam contraption in the bathroom, and lo and behold we have four already pecking their way out. Randy rooster indeed.

We are new at this. We know what failure feels like in the baby animal department. Anything could happen, but with ewes shorn and ready and deafening cheeps resonating from behind the plastic curtain, it's hard not to feel reborn myself.

The sun helps.