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

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©Katherine Dunn.

Saturday, October 01, 2016

Rosie goes outside! Tripod hurts his nose! The Head Troll lines them up!

I sometimes wonder if our pull to Maine had nothing to do with our guides, it had to do with guides for the well being of The- World's-Grumpiest-Pig-I-Am-Fine-As-I-Am-Pig, aka Rosie. A couple years ago, I found Rosie shivering in a light rain. This was very unusual as she hates rain, and hates to be chilled. And she was nowhere near the barn stall she liked to sleep in. She was closer to Old Barn so I got her in there and bedded her down in an old lambing pen.

She never left. In fact, even in the new spring warmth, she refused to go outside. She had always loved the warm sun baths she took in her first years at Apifera. It saddened me, but she just was content in her large suite, bathed in Old Barn's light.
I suspect it had something to do with the arrival of Eleanor, who had come to mate with Earnest. And Rosie is no match for Eleanor.

Well, fast forward to Maine. Rosie again has her private suite, but it is next to the sheep pens. She is uninterested in being friends with anyone. You all know her only friend long ago was Stevie the goat, but he even started sleeping in another area as Rosie grew to like being alone. She likes to sleep, that is about it these days.

So I was really happy that in the last three days, she has been outside waiting for me for breakfast. And she eats outside. She goes right back to bed, but...she seems very content with her new sleeping arrangement. I suspect she is getting arthritic in her hind end too, which might be part of it.

Sir Tripod Goat's Nose: The oddest cut I've seen in awhile. You try your best to keep any dangerous object or fencing out of animal areas, but any farm is loaded with lurking dangers for all of us. I first thought it was just a scratch, but after I started treating it realized he'd sliced it somehow. He spends most of his time in his stall and pen, so I can't figure it out. But he is on penicillin and will be fine.

The Head Troll is aging. You can see it in her body and loss of muscle, thinning hair and one of her eyes is cloudy. She also has started to like getting scratched and petted, only by me, but this is unheard of. Our entire relationship has been built on a delicate balance of respect, hands-off care taking and love-hate day to day. Hate is a strong word, love-irritation? This is a goat that can get stuck in anything, I'm sure always for a good reason in her thinking. But she is now living out with the sheep, and Benedetto and Birdie, near the equines and Rosie. She is about 30 pounds I'd say, but is no pussy cat around the very large and dominant Assumpta, or Calla, the two matriarch ewes. The Head Troll makes it clear at feeding time what side of the hay you need to be on if you are a sheep, she somehow gets them all over there on the opposite side of her in one swoop, and watches for any transgression of boundaries to her side of the hay. If that happens, pow, head butt.

The Head troll still has it. I'm glad. I want her to live out her life as herself as much as possible. She has a pretty good stash of handbags too since arriving.