Sunday, 16 April 2017

Happy Easter

The world outside our window has frozen, once again. This week has been cold and the weather forecast is telling us that next week is going to be the same. Waking up to minus six in the middle of April feels wrong, somehow.

Ebba thinks nothing of it and just carries on being young and bouncy. As far as she's concerned, you get less muddy in freezing conditions so she races around in her paddock, even faster than before. Her speed is impressive and she is getting more confident, when out walking.

Ebba still believes that it's possible to catch a passing bird even though it flies by, high in the sky. This makes for odd moments as she throws herself wholeheartedly into the chase, while forgetting about the person at the other end of the lead. I make a good impression of a rag doll, when this happens. So now we must look out for hare babies, deer, the odd car, blackbirds bobbing about, and all this while staring into the sky. Ebba is a very charming dog, though.

While on the subject of deer, we had a funny moment one evening, Ebba and I. Returning home from an evening walk, this cold week, Ebba went over to her favorite chair to watch the fields for foxes. At first, she just glanced in a sort of casual way and then she did a little jolt of a jump and quickly came to fetch me. When we returned together to her lookout point, the field below the house was filled with action. It looked like a convention for long legged animals as eight nice looking white-tailed deer, three small roe deer (one not so small, more circular) and three more white-tailed deer wandering up along the field, had a meeting out there. Ebba just stood stock still, taking it all in and did not move from her spot until the last animal had left. This took ages, as they found grass to eat and probably had a lot to talk about. It was an impressive sight and our dear dog fell asleep exhausted, after all that excitement. They say that it's important to exercise both body and mind of a young dog. I think we are doing just that. It's lovely that Ebba does not bark madly, in a situation like this, but takes time to observe and enjoy. Maybe other animals don't scare her as much as people?

Our hens had enough of being locked up, caged in and looked after. We still have a whole month of outside cage life to get through but our feisty, small hens staged a "Chicken run" scenario and legged it. Monty, our kind but slightly dizzy cockerel did not see it coming and was left behind. I helped him escape, I must admit.

Opening the stable door, one sunny but chilly morning gave me a bit of a shock, when Lina flew straight at me, followed by the rest of the hens. They did not stop until they were safely in the forest, in a deeply banked stream, where it's difficult to catch them. When Monty caught up with them (it took a while) they hurried upstream and played by a small spring, for a long time. Icy water is no problem for our lot and even Violet, one of our guest hens, had a small venture out into the stream. It was one of those perfect moments in life and we did understand their need to get out and get going. Lina, our oldest hen, was very proud of herself, that evening.

Our three guest hens left, not as we planned but that's life. One hen got ill and old, one old lady just slowed down and came to her end and Violet perked up no end. We decided, together with her owner's that as her companions went to heaven and she really likes Lina and Henrika, not to mention odd Monty, Violet should retire at Stoneback farm. Mindy, Mandy, Molly and My agreed, so there we are. Our charming sheep are liking the colder weather, as they are snug as bugs in their woolly jumpers. Mindy was tickled pink, when the hens joined them for the outing.

The Easter bunny visited us and we can now spend time eating chocolates and I guess that keeps us warm and happy. Ebba got a new chewy bone from the bunny and it's now hidden in my bed. She is still playing with the wrapping paper, though.

Have a lovely Easter holiday and remember to eat lots of chocolate eggs. We don't want to offend the Easter bunny, do we?

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