okay, working on a short post before I leave Boone. I plan to leave tomorrow morning after a tearful goodbye to my llamas, chickens, dogs cats fish goats people. definitely the people. Diane and Rob have been wonderful, so trusting and generous and sweet, and I've met a bunch of other really sweet, genuinely nice people (Emilie at the Todd supplies store, Ashley and April, Samantha and Shamba, Steve the next door neighbor, the guy that works at BeansTalk coffee shop, so many more random people).
I think I'm taking 81N, to 77, to 64 with my first stop in Louisville, KY. then I'll continue on 70 and stop again around Kansas City, MO the second night, and onto Boulder the next day!
my last couple of weeks have been interesting, I've been alone at the farm watching everything while Diane and Rob were down in Florida getting some business done. I got stressed out a few times, angry a couple, was filled with wonder all the time, and only cried twice.
I kept all of the llamas and livestock alive, the dogs are well, cats fine. My chickies, which turned out to be a huge part of my everyday life, are okay. I brought them into the barn last week because it turned really cold and even snowed for a couple of days (didn't stick, just light, fluffy flurries and sunlight!), so the first night they were locked in a stall and two of them disappeared. I imagine they were taken by a rat or snake, because I couldn't find them anywhere the next morning (cry number one). so I took to locking them up at night in a cat crate, up off the ground, in a stall with the llamas (they're supposed to be 'guardians' for all different animals, they're protective), which has worked so far. I lock them in a cat crate at around 6 when it gets dark, and get up early in the morning to let them out again (The Chickens Are, indeed, Restless--The Far Side, anyone?). so that's fun. for the past two days I've been letting them roam around with the mama hen, free to eat bugs and worms (they were really getting antsy inside the barn, and it's been so warm out!) and I've been successful with that. until this afternoon, when I approach them, notice that one's missing, walk around the barn and find it drowned in one of the llama's water buckets (cry number two). why the hell wouldn't anyone have gotten it out? the mother hen could have easily jumped in there to get it out, it's not more deep than she is tall. I was so mad, but I buried the little one, said a few words, and cried some more.
my angry times were mostly in the middle of the night when either Indy (the needy maltese loveable poo-head) or Miss Lucy (the geriatric calico cat) tried to get into bed with me. uh, no, Indy, I don't want your dried-egg-yolk-face all up in my space. and no, Miss Lucy, I don't want you to sleep on my head. and if I shut the door (which I hesitate to do because I already sleep like a rock and don't hear anything), they scratch/bark/yowl incessantly. seriously, I tried ignoring them but it actually doesn't work. serious dedication there.
I was filled with wonder on a daily basis, either when I woke up to look out of my gigantic bedside window with an incredible view between two mountains of the sun rising, moon rising, full sky of stars, etc. at the beginning of my stay it was a full moon and it lit up my entire bedroom and the entire farm, I could see the llamas from about 50-60 feet away in the middle of the night!
A girl that Diane works with (prarie home companion friend), Ashley, took me for a drive on the blue ridge parkway for a bit the other day, which was very enjoyable despite the fact that within the first 15 minutes I had her pull over so I could barf up my egg breakfast (I'm blaming it on the eggs, not the driving, and yeh, I barfed. it's been literally years since I threw up, I can't even remember when). luckily she's in the medical career world, so she didn't hate me (in fact, she was incredibly nice, even post-barf!). we walked around Price Lake looking for otters, didn't find any, but it did start to snow really lightly as we were sitting on a dock looking at the gray steely calm lake (quite romantic, actually). I'm not really used to vast bodies of water being so still (what? a lake? not an ocean?).
went for a couple other drives with Shamba, we also went to First Friday art walk in downtown boone last week, which was wonderful. there's a really great gallery called the Turchin Center for the Visual Arts that had a few really really cool collections. drank a bunch of beer, hot apple cider, and had some tasty snacks as well. Sam and Shamba have been so wonderful, they even brought over some movies to watch the other night (uh Repo Man? awful).
so this isn't quite as quick as I'd imagined, but then again, it's been quite a while and I've been doing so many things! my days pass so quickly, perhaps because by the time dark rolls around, I lock myself in the house and consider it bedtime.
the abbreviated plan for Boulder is this: Seth should be arriving there around Friday (by bicycle, if anyone's missed this reference, check his awesome blog). I'll be getting in around Saturday. we don't really know where we're going to stay immediately, but he has some contacts around there that might have us for the first week-ish. we'll look for jobs, we're not planning on doing farming since it's colorado in the winter, but we're thinking maybe Ski Resort, maybe food&bev (egh), maybe awesome art space/coffee shop (hah!). whatever we can find. long term living? weeelll not so sure about that yet.. but I should be there for a while (probably trapped by snow, Buster's not really the 4-wheelin' type)
my maps are laid out, my outreach texts are sent, and I'm all packed up. if you know anyone in Kansas City or Boulder that need a couch warmer, let me know! if you know of any job opportunities in the Boulder area, let me know! if you know of any place I just HAVE to see, let me know!! thanks for reading, see you later