Wednesday, January 7, 2015

A Letter To Ungrateful Sheep

Dear Flockers,

Hope you are doing well in this frigid weather? It looks like you are, since when I walked outside at dawn to greet you I noticed you were all happily chewing cud out on a patch of hay you've turned into your outdoor bedroom. It was nice to see you, content and woolly, doing what sheep do-but I feel as though you have failed to recognize what the human being is going through while you just chew and stare at me.

You see that rubber tub of water over there? Uh huh, that one. The one that is filled with LIQUID and not solid ice? Yes. The one you seem to ignore all day and let freeze. The one I scramble up the icy hill with crampons on my boots and flip over to de-ice? Yes, that same rubber tub you see me jump on top of to make those igloo bricks for the foundation of the zero igloos I will be constructing? Yes! That is the one! Do you see me when crab-walk down the icy hill and carry buckets of well water up to you in case you deign to take a sip in the next forty minutes or so? THAT is a lot of work and I just don't think you appreciate it. I really don't. You just watch me do this while chewing your breakfast greens and meditating on the intergalactic swirlings of the heavens inside the single snowflake on the end of your amazingly not-frost-bitten noses. Could you at least pretend to show some appreciation? Clap? Smile? a Nod?!

And that hay, by the by, that hay was hauled here in that semi-legal dented monster I am still paying off in the driveway. Yes. I carried those bales to you after loading them in the truck from a farm miles away, from a stash of hay I helped load into said barn months ago... for this very moment. And yet you stare, watching your new water freeze, closing your eyes to contemplate the comforts of 5 inches of wool on your stomaches.

Oh, sheep. You watch me scuttle and struggle. You snicker at my bundled up naked body. You and your clique of a herd all invested in your polyamorous baby-making. You know what? I think you may be snobs. Seriously. Like those rich people at the ski slope drinking slippery cocktails in their Smartwool long underwear while the staff walks by with a push broom with duct tape on their box-store parkas. Yes. I am saying it now. Sheep are elitist, alpine sport-loving, boozers, with their noses in the air.

Or maybe...
Or maybe I just need to invest in a good hose and a frost-free hydrant?

Nah, sheep are assholes.



Blogger lemontreelane said...

Love this!

January 7, 2015 at 9:33 AM  
Blogger Cat H said...

They had a great role model in Maude. They're just carrying on the tradition.

January 7, 2015 at 9:37 AM  
Blogger 0kateknits0 said...

Thanks for the chuckles

January 7, 2015 at 9:50 AM  
Blogger Erica said...

Maybe look into a solar powered setup using a little heater submerged in the water to keep a bit of their bucket melted. We use one of them in our chicken waterer bucket and it works great. We dont currently use solar but I doubt it uses that much electricity.

January 7, 2015 at 10:34 AM  
Blogger Finding Home Farm said...

Thank you for starting my morning with a good laugh!

January 7, 2015 at 10:58 AM  
Blogger Holly said...

HAHA! LOVE this. I take care of my small amount of livestock and experience the same thing. Carry out water to chickens, put it down, and will them to drink. Call them by names...splash the water to let them know it is there. They all stare at me like I am crazy. The lead hen even starts doing her "growl" at me. No one drinks. I come back in an hour to get the frozen water, defrost, and repeat. Same thing with rabbit. Except I can see the disdainful thoughts in her eyes..."humans,what pains!" The minute my back is turned she hops over and drinks/eats. Winter fun:(

January 7, 2015 at 11:21 AM  
Blogger Kate said...

That made me laugh! In MN we were pretty low budget in our horse set up, water trough was an old bathtub, (metal) and all winter the water was kept not frozen with a tub heater especially for livestock. Never had a problem with the horses messing with it or the cord... Are sheep different?
Still remember dragging the hose up the road, hooking it up to the neighbors house, filling the tub and trying to roll the hose back up when it was -15 and snowing... even though I was a teenager I still haven't recovered from that epic!

January 7, 2015 at 2:18 PM  
Blogger Geeka said...

My mom told me that if you put a ball in standing water, the wind and such should keep it moving and the water won't freeze as fast. IDK if it works, or if it'll work there (it's colder than here). But might save you some work.

January 7, 2015 at 6:04 PM  
Blogger Sharon said...

Jenna, LOL, those dare they?? Anyway, there are heated hoses and stock tank deicers. I understand that price may be too high for for sales

January 7, 2015 at 9:54 PM  
Blogger Tanya T said...

Sheep are assholes - indeed. I've often felt the same about the horses we board as they stand outside the barn waiting for their fresh stalls and bucket of oats, indignantly and snobbishly like we are holding them up. Hurry up my servant, get those stalls clean and go about your business.

January 8, 2015 at 8:45 AM  
Blogger DarcC said...

I have some might entitled chickens and horses here myself!

January 8, 2015 at 10:45 AM  
Blogger Laura L. said...

I don't know how big the area is that you are wintering the sheep in, but if there's enough fresh snow they are probably just eating that. : ) My 85 sheep are out on pasture all winter (in central Wisconsin) and while I do haul hay out for them I don't haul any water once the snow starts to fly.

January 8, 2015 at 12:41 PM  
Blogger Jess Sheppard said...

"Dear Flockers".... Sounds familiar---except here it's referring to our chickens :D

January 11, 2015 at 3:08 PM  
Blogger Ginny said...

Water. The bane of winter existence.
Saw a cool design for chicken waterers out of a 50 gallon barrel. Brilliant, really.
Anything that keeps water from freezing in winter is a beautiful thing!

January 12, 2015 at 2:13 PM  
Blogger Carolyn said...

I unhooked my hose and started carrying my water again when I saw an an excerise called Farmer's Carry. No setting aside time to get on the floor and do crunches. Workout complete when the chores are done. Too much convenience is not good for me. But our livestock are still displaying entitlement that they don't earn in the winter.

January 13, 2015 at 7:37 AM  

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