Sheep Gazing

This past Saturday we stopped by the Great Lakes Fiber Show (it’s something of a tradition at this point).  I visited with the lovely Bare Naked Wools folks (you should come play in our knitalong, it’s the yummiest yarn imaginable).  But other than a few goodies from their booth, I actually managed to not bring home any yarn.  Shocking I know.  But I’m in the yarn acquisition phase for a new set of books (yes, already, these things have long timelines), and am sort of saturated with yarn-y goodness at the moment.  But, so as not to leave you hanging, I did snap a few sheep pics.  I’m pretty sure any of these folks would make a lovely addition to the back yard.

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Retreat, Part II

After the stroll (no, no it was more of a hike — a hike with moments of slog), it was time for lunch.  I went back to Eastsound (small island, small towns, that was the closest spot that promised a selection of lunch spots).  I stormed the first restaurant I found and devoured some sort of massive sandwich product.

As I was sitting there, marveling at how amazingly tasty things are after a nice long scramble in the woods (and trying hard to ignore the muddy cuffs on my pants), I though hmmm, perhaps I should double check the ferry schedule. So yeah.  That was the wrong order of operations.  The ferry was leaving in about five minutes.  And the next one didn’t leave for about four hours.  I said bad words.  Several.

Nothing if not stoic, I decided there were worse fates than having to entertain oneself for four hours on a beautiful island.  Properly fortified, I first sought out the local grocery store and secured provisions for my time at the cabin (it was cold enough that they would be fine in the trunk for a few hours).  Next, I walked up and down pretty much every street in downtown Eastsound (I emphasize again, it’s a small town).  Finally, I stopped in at the bookstore and equipped myself for any future unexpected delays.

I still had a bit of time to kill, so I thought I’d head out and see some of the other various bits of the island.  While driving, I passed several fields full of sheep and just happened to see this sign.  It seemed promising, and I had time, so I did a completely illegal u-turn and toddled off down the road.  This proved to be a wise choice.

I turned down a driveway and pulled up behind what seemed quite clearly to be someone’s house.  There was a sign saying the studio was around back, so (feeling like a trespasser the whole time) I headed that way.  As I got out of my car, the woman walking across the yard said ‘have you ever seen a newborn lamb?’  I muttered something less than clever and full of squeaks and squeals.

She very graciously interpreted that as ‘no, but I’d love to’ and took me in to see the lamb.  I made a complete dolt of myself fawning all over it.  It had been born just that morning, and its mom hadn’t bonded with it.  I expressed great distress at this, but was assured that the lamb would be well taken care of and should be fine.  I, on the other hand, nearly needed a tissue.  Cutest little fuzball ever.  And I did take a picture, but it was a black lamb under a red heat lamp (to keep it warm) in a plastic bin (to keep it safe and snug).  So the picture does in no way convey the full adorableness of the critter.  But still.  Tiny, newborn, baby lamb (and yes that’s redundant, but it was hours old people, if that’s not a baby lamb I don’t know what is).

After that shameful display, I gathered myself and headed in to the shop proper…where I promptly lost my mind in a whole different way.  Lots and lots of lovely yarn, much of it from the sheep in the adjacent fields was hanging out waiting for me.  I managed to resist most of the yarn (most mind you, not all), but I proved to have no resistance whatsoever to the blankets.  Blankets made right there, from sheep living right there.  I bought this one.  Feel free to gaze at it longingly and wish it were yours.  It is the warmest thing ever.  I will keep it forever.  I’m seriously considering writing away for another one.  I’m that smitten.

Having indulged myself (and after asking permission and being duly warned about the electric fence), I wandered over to meet the goats.  They had names, but I don’t remember them.  Besides, in their secret hearts, they are clearly Giovanni and Ernesto.  They told me so.  They also expressed their dismay that I was rude enough to walk up to their enclosure without bringing snacks.  How thoughtless.

 

 Feeling that sheep and goats and yarn and blankets and tiny baby lambs were likely the highpoint of the day, I headed to the ferry.  I was the first car.  I took my book, secured a cup of coco and a cookie, and found a place to sit and read while I waited.  At which point a squadron of attack bunnies descended upon the area and approached in a menacing fashion (they were after the cookie, I just know it).  I escaped without incident and spent the rest of the evening fighting to stay awake until a decent hour and so get on west coast time.

As Advertised

Maryland Sheep & Wool had, not surprisingly, a large number of sheep and other wooly things.  We found wee baby goats:

Curly horned sheep (do the horns mean they’re boys?  Are boy sheep really rams, like how boy cows aren’t so much cows as bulls or steer?):

Sheep getting haircuts:

And sheep with the post trim dreads (very styling):

Plus the odd llama and rabbit and other furry friend.  Very cute.  Very smelly.  Very noisy.