Sometimes, I think that the most heavenly state I ever experience is when things are just NORMAL. Perhaps I am getting to be secretly obsessive/compulsive as I age, in that I crave a predictable routine. Special activities are nice but my inner self is always holding its breath and waiting for things to fall back into that comfortable rut so I can exhale. Life on a hobby farm lends itself well to this, as there are animals and plants depending on me to keep things on a steady, consistent schedule. I can’t neglect feeding and cleaning up after the animals – they are now my dependent children. If I neglect the gardens, the weeds quickly take over and things get out of control or the vegetables get overgrown or rotten.
This summer started out far from normal and I am just beginning to feel the relief of my familiar rut falling back into place. We had a (wonderful) big vacation, followed by me going into the hospital for abdominal surgery, followed by the planning and execution of a memorial service for my mother and a big family picnic at the farm. Now that that is all in the past, I can focus on my own physical recovery from the surgery and picking away slowly at our farm projects.
The first project is finishing the preparation for adopting our two new goats, Everett and Edison. We have to finish hooking up the electric fence, build them a shelter from the sun, wind, and rain, and figure out how to store and deliver their food and water. Then there is all the learning to be done about, shall we say, goat maintenance. I know they’ll need shots and hoof trimming, and I’ll have to teach them to trust me to handle them. I feel quite ignorant at the moment.
But you know, I knew nothing about chickens before we brought them onto the farm. Now, it is just another routine chore that gives me a lot of pleasure. I love those chickens, and I think they look up to me as their protector and benefactor. The farm would be empty without them. One day, I expect to feel the same about the goats.