So, I mentioned that last Thursday we drove to Springfield to pick up the long-sought-after and well-researched goat, then spur-of-the-moment I bought another one.
Believe it or not, here's a short version of the story.
As I'd mentioned, I'd had a difficult time deciding to part with Honey. As her milk supply increased but her teats remained small (listen, this blog is just going to use words like "teats" sometimes. If that doesn't sit well with you -- then move along. :), she became more difficult for me to hand-milk. But, I'd been helping this fella who was just getting into goats. He was building his herd and had lots of questions. After thinking about it for awhile, I determined that Honey would be a perfect fit for him because he didn't intend to hand-milk but wanted to sell off the babies. Honey, being from Pruittville and Kastdemur lines, would have highly marketable babies. I figured I could handle parting ways with Honey because I knew she would be a perfect fit for his farm and would be well cared for just across town from us.
So, I went through with it. It was one of those tough farm decisions. We dropped her off at her new home on Sunday evening. Then, on Thursday, as we were driving home from Springfield, John was scrolling through his phone just as we were about to make a gas station stop: "Umm, Ash, Honey is for sale on one of the goat sales' sites."
I pulled in to the stop and opened it up on my phone. And, yep. There was my goat. And, though she wasn't technically my goat anymore, there she was-- for sale. But, it was my picture. The picture being used to list her was the very one I had used in last week's post about how difficult it had been to leave her at her new home. I felt like I'd been punched in the gut.
As we continued our trip home, John, level-headed as always, tried to help me make sense of my emotions (and there were a lot of them at that point). He reminded me that we had signed the papers and sold the goat, so I had no say over her future. We had signed away that right. My head knew that he was right. But, my gut was in knots. It just wasn't what I thought I'd agreed to. Clearly, I hadn't been as ready to part with Honey as I thought I was. We hashed it out and finally reached the conclusion that I wanted her back.
John called the fella and made an offer. As soon as we got home and got Mo settled in, John headed over to rescue Honey from her uncertain future and bring her back home. I just couldn't go with him, but I sat outside and waited for them to pull back in the drive. I worried for about half a second that Honey would be angry with me. I should have known better. That's not her style.
Our goats do not like our transport cage. They don't like to get in it; and, once they're in, they don't like to get out of it. But, as John backed the truck up to the field and the rest of the herd cried out, Honey knew she was home and came leaping out of that cage! Her baby, Solo, was perhaps the happiest and went straight for momma and her milk. While Honey's supply had diminished in the 4 days she'd been gone, Solo seemed happy enough, so I'm guessing momma hadn't dried up entirely.
Honey doesn't seem to be holding a grudge. She was nibbling my leg this morning and trying to wiggle her way through the fence for extra grain -- same 'ole Honey.
So, yet again, I've shown myself to be a poor farmer. Good farmers make tough decisions. They make smart decisions that make logical sense -- and they stick with them.
Oh, well. Forget being a good farmer. I'd rather be a good caretaker. And that means looking out for the best interest of the animals in my care. That's the kind of farmer that I want to be. So, for now, Honey is here. She may always be here. Because, let's be honest, I love that bull-headed, tiny-teated goat!
(I welcome any comments of the "welcome home, Honey" variety. And, I totally deserve any comments that are verbal eye rolls about my wishy-washy-ness or ridiculously emotional attachment to livestock. However, please refrain from making disparaging comments about the man who briefly owned my goat. I've tried to be kind about it, and I ask that you be as well. If you absolutely must express how aghast you are about the whole situation, please do so in a private way rather than for all to see. ;) Thanks in advance.)