Apifera Farm - where art, story, animals & woman merge. Home to artist Katherine Dunn

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Sunday, July 06, 2014

When the old man needs a haircut



Working alone with a creature, or nature, allows you to go back into your own memory. It gives you quiet space to percolate, dream, grieve, love, laugh...remember.

All around the world, women patiently give their their old men haircuts. My mother did it for my father in his final years. I've always cut The Dirt Farmer's locks and am sure I'll do it until I can't-at which point he can just grow it long and wispy.

So I felt obliged to get Aldo out of his winter suit. I had waited because of the rush of Pino Pie Day and had hoped to find a shearer, but to no avail. Since I do everything on my own anyway, I felt it was a good bonding time for me and llama.

For starters, I talked to my llama friend up the road and got some tips. Fortunately, Aldo is very obedient and there wasn't any problem between customer and hair cutter. No spits or kicks. In fact, I think he liked it. Who wouldn't like getting all that hair off?

Now, I don't think I will win "The 2014 Best Llama Haircut" category this year, but since I didn't enter one either, who cares. I don't. I just was pleased I could help him out. It took about three hours, and that was because I was using three different pairs of scissors.

NOTE to all llama experts reading this post-and I know you are out there- please do not write and scoff at me for my scissor choice. I simply felt serendipitous upon waking, and even though I knew I didn't have the proper gear, decided to forge ahead to do a hair cut knowing the heat was coming.

So of course the minute I started cutting, I immediately knew I had to invest in llama shearers, and I will. I could have taken off another inch, and might try to find a proper clipper and do that this coming week or next. Martyn had to be summoned several times to sharpen my scissors, and as he gave me back one pair, I'd take the newly sharpened pair and he'd run off and sharpen the dulled pair.

What I really loved about giving the haircut though were the simple moments between woman and llama. Aldo really likes to have his eyeballs gently rubbed, and even kissed. Since he was tied, I got to do a lot of that. The other wonderful part about working alone with a creature, or nature, is it allows you to go back into your own memory. It gives you quiet space to percolate, dream, grieve, love, laugh...remember. I had a memory flash through me of giving the dog a haircut when I was about six - I got a hold of the electric dog trimmer unbeknownst to my mother. That shaved little poodle took it in stride. I then proceeded to shave the bangs of my next door neighbor, also my age, but my mother found us just as my friend was about to clip my hair. I guess she got the worst of it, but we thought it looked fabulous. Our mothers did not.

So Aldo's hair cut might not be the best, but nobody was laughing around here. In fact, all the hair on the ground provided intrigue, and Aldo had many visitors during his post hair cut. Even the pig came by to roll in it.

As I left, The Great White looked a bit smaller. A bit older. I was happy to see he wasn't as thin as I dreaded. But like all old men who get free haircuts from their women, he hobbled off a bit lighter, and appreciative of the help I'm sure.









3 comments:

NancyGeneArmstrong said...

JUst wonderful-no spiting or kicking-kisses-love how you two have bonded so nicely. And the first photo of Aldo and the chicken is a perfect drawing just waiting for you. I know you are both much happier now.

Corrine at sparkledaysstudio.com said...

Kind of a cute punk haircut....xox

barbara@sparrowavenue said...

well, he looks so stoic and regal, now doesn't he?
And his chicken friends lend that certain" je ne sais quoi" that makes everything simply perfect!

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Thank you for reading! The farm and my art/writing keep me hopping, so might not respond immediately. Thank you for understanding. ~Katherine & Apifera ~