Monday, November 18, 2019

November Hill farm journal, 86

It’s a cold gray rainy day that took me by surprise. I thankfully took the dogs out for their farm romp before the rain started, and then had to dash out to let the pony and donkeys in so they could have shelter and hay in the barn if they wanted. The donkeys wanted, the half-Shetland pony loves cold rain and stands out in it if not locked in a stall.

Cody and Keil have in paddocks adjoining the barn for the past 9 days. Last Saturday morning Cody presented a deep laceration in the groin, which prompted a vet call, stitches, antibiotics, Bute, and of course arnica and bellis perennis. He’s doing well, and the vet has been back to check on him, but the swelling that has traveled to his sheath and barrel/midline has been hard to see. Vet says it’s normal and all is well. We’ve never had anything like this to manage before. The worst thing is that I may be the one whose fault it is, since I left a plastic muck rake in the pasture lying (tines down) across the muck-barrow. We found it Saturday afternoon on the ground, a tine broken off, and somehow I think Cody might have run into it in the early morning hours and impaled himself. There are a couple of other possibilities that have to do with branches and brush, but we’ll never know exactly how this happened.

Yesterday we had sunshine and nice temps, which led to planting the 8 native wild blueberries I had on hand. I love where they are, that they’ll feed wildlife and bees, maybe us too, that they turn a stunning crimson in the fall, that they’ll create a screen on the edge of our property where we planted them.

The orchard grass seed we sowed in the grass paddock, barnyards, dirt paddock and back pasture is doing extremely well. I’ve been told for years it was useless to plant here, but one person told me she plants it and it does well, and since she lives nearby, I decided to try it. I ordered the first batch of seed online, and then suddenly our local feed store started carrying it, so we’ve bought subsequent batches there. We still need to sow the front pasture, and will get to it soon, I hope. It’s going to be interesting to see how it does through the year.

Bear Corgi has suddenly had some arthritis, according to the vet, and is on Adequan injections and double dose omega 3s to help it. Vet says short, frequent walks are best, and he’s self-regulating, so I hope he is more comfortable. It seems he is - he’s getting on the furniture again and is ever eager to go outside. Right now he’s on the huge dog bed though, as Clementine and Baloo have taken up the entire sofa between them and I’m spread out on the loveseat. Pippin has the chair, and that’s it for the living room seating!

We still have fall color, though it’s starting to fade after the stretch of 40/20 temps we had last week. Tomorrow we’re back up to the 60/40 range. I’m having a hard time believing it’s already the past the middle of November.

Yesterday I was cleaning stalls and happened to capture this on film. It was wonderful, and I wish I had the entirety of it, and also a more accurate representation of the sound, but here you go:

Saturday, November 09, 2019

Dear November Hill

Dear November Hill,

Thank you for the gorgeous autumn show you’re putting on for us. Fifteen years ago we met you in the springtime, made the offer that same day, closed the deal in late summer, and then November came. You were in your glory.

This year, as every year, I know that when November comes I’ll see it again. The colors and textures and changing season of a house and a barn on a hill, where I’m still learning the land and the wildlife,  trying to be a good steward of what keeps you happy and healthy.

The gifts you give are moment by moment. I’m grateful and still in awe.


Wednesday, November 06, 2019

Audrey Hepburn and adorable donkey

I saw this someplace online a few weeks back and it reminded me of a young Rafer Johnson. What a gorgeous photo, in any case! A pair of stars.

Photo taken by Norman Parkinson

In 1955, Audrey and Bimba the donkey are photographed together at Villa Rolli, South of Rome, during the filming of King Vidor’s War and Peace.”