A sunny weekend day usually means chores, but we promised ourselves a trip to Hancock Shaker Village, a historic farm/museum/preservation site only 30 minutes drive from our place. It was the last weekend of Baby Animals, and there was sheep shearing...so we couldn't resist!
This round barn is the centerpiece of the farm - it's construction is magnificent! The whole place is awe-inspiring...what beauty there is in the peaceful and thoughtful pursuit of a way of life.
Inside were the baby animals - sheep, pigs, cows, and all sorts. Madison got to help bottle feed a lamb...There were furniture and woodworking barns...
And we left feeling very satisfied and justified in the lifestyle choices we are making. Everywhere around us were families of all makes and ages, and the one thing that most had in common was their absolute amazement at farm life, and an unsettling ignorance of what the farm is/was all about.
A woman who had no idea what the shearer was doing to the poor ewe, and who was even more clueless as to how that stuff got to be yarn (You only have to do that once for each sheep, right? What?!? Every year? Doesn't that hurt the sheep?) A man who explained to his grandson that the 3-week-old chick, half-feathered and as large as pidgeon, was just hatched. Today. (And as soon as it gets all it's feathers, it will begin to lay an egg every day until it dies.) Another woman who thought maple syrup came right out of the trees, ready to go. (These recipes sound delicious, but who'd want to go to all the effort to cut their trees and get out the syrup? You cook it to get it that way? But, why?) And a man who couldn't tell the difference between a goat and a sheep, despite the big yellow signs that identified all the animals. (You have to look at the back, dear. Those ones with the big bags back there are goats, because that is where goat's milk comes from. And the ones with horns are all sheep. Curly horns are males, straight horns are females.)
We couldn't leave without perusing the gift shop, where DH found edibles, and the midget and I found books, books, and more books. (Gotta haves.)
Back at the ranch by 3:00, and the chores began. Rototilling, mailbox installation, feeding, and moving roosters, and more (pictures tomorrow!)
And we made a new friend.Or, I should say, Madison made a new friend. This is a feral? cat that has been hanging around since last summer. She/he is sooooo timid, and has a very damaged right ear, and if my eyes don't deceive me, a funny gait with that back left leg. Perhaps abuse? What ever the circumstances, my patient and kind little midget spent all afternoon coaxing it out from under the porch with milk and cat food. She has dubbed "it" Max.