There are a couple of new regulars in the Mouse Pack (just as entertaining as Sinatra's Rat Pack, but smaller) in the milking room. When Kinks was alive (the little guy with the broken tail), I started putting down a separate bit of grain for him because the other kids would bully him. I continued to put grain there just in case he came back, but he never did. Pal has taken Kinks' place. Pal doesn't have any particular physical attribute to make him stand out; it's his attitude. That little pile of feed is just a foot or two from my side when I'm milking. The other mice duck for cover if I move, but Pal sits quietly and politely eats his breakfast, regardless. He watches me with calm eyes. It's as if he knows I'm a friend. I enjoy his company.
Twitchy comes every morning, too. The other mice are cautious, but Twitchy carries it to the extreme. He appears out of the burrow hole in the corner, some distance from the buffet. He may poke his head out three or four times like a Jack-in-the-box before he gathers enough courage to actually come into the room. He then takes a few steps (mouse steps) in and then pops back down. This is repeated I don't know how many times, gaining a little ground each time before he finally gets to the grain. He disappears in a heartbeat if I even turn my head in his direction so I watch out of the corner of my eye. He never stops to eat like most of the others, but grabs a kernel and dashes for home. I don't know if he stashes his hoard or gobbles it in safety, but he makes trip after trip each day. I applaud his reluctant bravery.
It seems the Mouse Pack feels the same way about rainy days as the goats. When it's very stormy, few to none of them come out of their burrows even for breakfast. I envision them tucked in their underground nests, snuggled warmly in blankets of stolen diaper wipes. They must draw straws to see who is going to go for take-out because the grain is gone by next day. With this short stretch of sunny days, they've been coming in hoards to eat their fill and slurp up some milk.
It's always nice to see new players on stage.