Thoughts on my long “vacation”

Not that it’s truly been a vacation, but I’ve been off work for a long, long time.  Almost two years.  Not counting the short stints working at Wal-Mart and Walgreens.  I’ve both learned and accomplished a lot, probably didn’t accomplish as much as I needed to, I guess I’m lazy by nature.  I go to Mellow Mushroom this Friday for orientation and it is my understanding that training will start Saturday.  I am excited about working there and I hope that it works out.

I don’t know why, but I’m feeling incredibly depressed.  I have no reason to be depressed.  Everything is going reasonably well.  I barely have enough energy to take care of the animals these days.  Maybe it’s the weather.  It’s hot again and we desperately DESPERATELY need rain.  I’m not sleeping well and it’s hard to get up in the morning.  Maybe going back to work will help.

I find myself doing chores in stages: I go out and milk Gwen and then let her calves out, let out the chickens and ducks and feed them.  The cow milking/calf sorting process is going really well.  Then I come back in the house and try to recharge my batteries for the next stage of chores.  Then I go back out and feed the horses and put Gwen and her calves down into the back pasture, milk and feed the goats and Spot and then put them out to pasture.  Let out the pigs and feed them.  Come back in the house and try to recharge my batteries.  Maybe my batteries are no longer holding a charge.  Then I go back out and feed the cats and dogs and drag the hose around the property filling water pails and barrels.  Earlier I wrote about dragging the hose around.  I have to do it with the ATV because it’s so heavy.  The animals are drinking water by the gallons.

I rode Trophy on Sunday and had a good time, but I haven’t ridden him since.  It’s hard to get up the ambition to go out and ride by myself.  Not sure if it’s ambition or energy.  I can’t seem to recharge my batteries enough to get up enough energy to go out and ride him.  Also, I’m not happy with how the saddle I have fits him.  It’s wide enough, but the skirt is too long and it hits against his hip bones as he moves.  That can’t be comfortable.  Last night, I went and picked up an endurance saddle that I thought was going to fit him, and it may very well, but it’s a poorly made saddle and it stinks to high heaven of mold!!!  I’m highly allergic to mold.  Just having it in the house triggers sneezing and asthma attacks.  Hopefully I’ll find a proper saddle soon.

We did get the cross fencing done on Monday.  All that is lacking is getting the grass under the fence mowed and installing a cattle panel into the hedge row where we couldn’t put electric fence.  We’ll also need to put a few pieces of field fence against the barbed wire that was exposed by clearing the hedge row (to make sure neither the goats nor Rose can get around the fence).  I’m not holding my breath that Rose will stay in the pasture; hopefully the goats will.  It’s been great to be able to put Gwen and her calves down into the back pasture.  Neither horse has shown any inclination to chase them.  I think at first Gwen was nervous around the horses, but now she comes into the paddock with them when it’s close to time for her to come up.  Cows have wonderful internal clocks.  She knows when it’s time to be milked in the morning and then when it’s time to come up in the evening.  Sorting the calves off her in the evening has become really easy.  It used to be a rodeo.

Gel had been working like shit for a while.  I don’t know what got into him.  Maybe the same thing that got into me.  I was about ready to trade him in for a new model (yea, right!); but he seems to have straightened out and is doing his job.  What a freaking amazing thing it is to have a dog that can put up or move chickens and ducks; herd pigs and keep them off me when I’m pouring their food (a WONDERFUL thing); move the cows (even if one of the cows is an angry mother cow); do all that I need him to do with the goats, etc., etc.  He’s truly a great dog.  Mica is still doing well too.  It’s way too early to know if he’ll be useful or not, but he’s a clever boy.  That’s important.

Well, I guess I better get out and milk the goats and finish up the chores and then maybe I’ll take a nap.

Until later …

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