That dense nighttime fog burned off early yesterday and the sun was shining when Bessie and I went walkabout. However, we went v-e-r-y slowly and didn't go far. The deck was coated with frost and Bess crunched through frozen grass. We took a shortcut back through the laundry room instead of risking life and limb again when she was done. It wasn't until I went out to feed that I realized just how far the temp had dropped. Condensation on the bare branches had formed a myriad of tiny icicles. The light wasn't right for a good photo, but I tried. The Silkie pen is covered with chicken wire for their safety. After a rain, I'm drenched with droplets if my head brushed the wire and sometimes there is a dump of snow. Yesterday there was a drum roll of ice pellets; the only time I recall that happening.
How do they know? Goats are such perverse creatures. Looking forward to an early lunch date, I wanted to be in and out of the barn quickly. So much for what I want. Inga, first up, would not go in the milking room for love nor money. Time passed as I cajoled and cussed, baby-talked and begged. Staying just out of reach so I couldn't grab her collar, she'd get as far as putting her nose over the threshold and then dart away again. She indicated she'd rather go back to her room. Aha! Once in awhile I can outsmart 'em. I let her back in and shut the gate behind us. She was trapped in the aisle and couldn't get away. Snagging an unwilling Inga and dragging her out and around, the deed was done. Sheila didn't have a choice; she's always brought out of her stall on a rope. Esther and Cindy came in on cue. And then there was Tessie the Terrible. Munching away on alfalfa up at the corner, she ignored me as only a goat can. Fine, just fine. Two can play that game. I gathered rake, bucket, and shovel and went to clean the back stalls. Hearing a whicker close by, I looked over the half-walls to find that Tessie had not only come to the barn, she'd flipped the latch and gotten in and up on the stand by herself. I beat feet around the corner before the others could join her and got her milked in double time.
With not much time to spare, I met Mary up in Pleasant Valley. I'm becoming an habitue of Bones (twice in a week), and it's one of Mary's favorite places. We only see each other every couple of years, and it's a chance for a good lunch and a nice catch-up visit.
Up here, we try to do as many errands as possible on every outing so as not to waste time or gas. I made a hit-and-run stop at the grocery store in P. Valley since I was there anyhow (forgetting that I'm completely out of potatoes) before coming home. It was bill-paying day and I had to get back. That onerous task effectively shot the rest of the afternoon; a shame since the sun stayed out all day and there were other things I'd much rather have done.