Thursday, 7 January 2010

Who Let The Dogs Out?

This snow is giving me a headache, no, really, the glare of the sun reflecting off it has had me running for the painkillers. It isn't really worrying any of the animals, the alpacas are charging round up to their knees in the white stuff. Ms Humphreys managed to find a couple of clumps of grass and looked quite smug as she grazed away in front of the others, she was determined that she wasn't going to share though.

Si took out the Xmas tree this morning ready to go to the recycling centre but the alpacas must have thought it was for them and immediately set about trying to eat it. I wondered if it was safe and thought if it would be ok then we would leave them to it so a quick call to Head Office (Rob and Les at Wellground) was made, they thought that all evergreens would be slightly toxic so we telephoned the vet to find out. They said that it wasn't toxic but it could make them queezy so it was left on the shed roof out of reach of all of them. They're not going to starve with hay, haylage, alfafa, camelibra and the odd apple.

We had to risk a trip out to get more animal supplies and to hunt for more spring locks for the paddock gates. We had a discussion about whether to find out if anybody in the village needed any shopping done or help but chickened out because of the objections regarding the planning permission. It doesn't seem to be the 'done' thing down here which seems a shame. We had found out that gas supplies can't get through this week and we know that the local garages had run out of bottles. We set off down the lane and saw a delivery van heading in our direction. The driver obviously decided that it wasn't worth the risk and then struggled to turn round; the snow wasn't deep but the road was going downhill and was very icy. We took the long way round to get into Honiton and then on to Mole Valley. On the way we saw a woman with her daughter struggling along one of the lanes, we decided to risk it and stopped put the rear seats down and offered her a lift into town. She was amazed and really grateful. I said that I didn't think we were strange stopping to offer a lift to a stranger and she explained that she had only been down here for 6 years and were she was from originally people did it all the time. She said that nobody had done anything like that since she'd been down here so I think we'll offer help again and maybe it will encourage other people to do the same.

When we got home there wasn't an alpaca in sight and I though they had all been stolen. I called them and they normally come running but only Mimi came down to greet me. They were all staying in the field shelters and I must admit they did look snug but once they saw the feed bucket they all raced towards the feed troughs.

The dogs are hating this weather too and are spending most of the day in front of the fire. The smell of singeing dog hair is delightful. They woke me this morning at 5am to go out, well Tilly did and Donder decided that she might as well go too. They went out, did what they had to do and then charged past me. I was freezing and still half asleep and crawled back to the bedroom and there was no sign of the dogs in their baskets. I went back to the living room and thought I'd just missed them in the dark but no sign................... I must have dreamt them coming back in so went back to the door and was calling them outside. Still no sign but my shouting must have woken Si. He said they were in the bedroom. I went back in and still couldn't see them so asked Si where they were. They had charged past me and jumped into the bed and under the quilt which explains why I couldn't see them. They were pushed back out and into their baskets but when we woke up later they had crept back into the bed under the quilt with their heads on the pillow. We'll soon put a stop to that.

But.... looking on the bright side, isn't it easy collecting alpaca poo off snow?

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