Friday, September 23, 2016


The leaves are suffused with the colors of farewell
Brightly they engage, a visual embrace
Bathed by late sun, carried by crisp air,
The colors call out, bid us adieu,
Like the daily sunsets,
but the autumn goodbye is longer, bittersweet.

 ©Maria Amodei 2016

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

The Shots

I re-vaccinated my lambs for CDT this past weekend since two of them have gotten enterotoxaemia despite having been vaccinated in spring. They are about 6 months old now, strong and supple, not at all accustomed to being handled. Normally I just lift the front end of lambs and push their hind feet forward to pop them on their bum for shots. But 6 month old lambs are too large for this. They were able to plant their hind feet, moving them back as needed to keep their feet under them. With their hind feet firmly on the ground they can perform maneuvers that much resemble the royal Lipizzan stallions. Except that instead of impeccably clad riders and music there is just me, filthy and frustrated and swearing a blue streak.  So I tried leveraging their head over their back like you would drop a ewe.  The moment I’d put a hand on their head it was like I was holding the head of an angry 80 pound cobra, entire spine snaking and swinging their body.  And this is with them pressed in a corner by a dog.  I can barely move through the velcro pack but they apparently can slide along each other like greased ball bearings.  They make moves that ewes only dream of, and the shorter body makes it very difficult to get them in position to actually tip.  I did mention how strong and incredibly supple they are right?  I may as well have been trying to out-maneuver the US women’s gymnastics team.  Indeed maybe I should name my replacement ewe lambs Simone, Laurie, Aly, Gabby and Madison.