Friday, March 6, 2009

Goodbye My Nemesis

Today I said goodbye to the bain of my existence.  The ram finally went home!  With the assistance - well, let's use the word assistance loosely - of my father I got him loaded into the stock trailer, drove the hour to Norman's place, unloaded, visited and made the trek back.  Sounds pretty simple doesn't it?

Well, first dad has to use the tractor to dig a path out to the corrals for the truck to drive on since we just had a blizzard a day ago.  Dad, being a man, had to be the one to maneuver the truck and trailer through the snow path into the corral, backing it up to the gate.  (Yes, this is tongue in cheek!)  10 minutes later the trailer was in position after much fruitless waving of my arms and shouting "No the other way, turn it the other way!!"  I felt bad as he doesn't drive the truck with a trailer very often so is a wee bit out of practice.  Makes for an interesting drive anyhow.  (I've been miserably sick so I was strictly riding as copilot today.)  

To load the ram we had to first separate the ram and the ewes.  With Tessa's help I had the sheep pushed up to where the gate into a separate pen was located.  The ram usually leads so I knew I just had to have them roll around and the ram would shoot through the gate.  Except dad stood in the middle of the gate rolling the ram past the gate and back into the middle of the pen.  Gently trying to explain that he needed to move and let the dog work I watched as he waded into the sheep and began using the paddle to get them to move.  He then physically shoved the ram through the gate.  Sigh.

Next, we needed to get the ram from his separate pen into the trailer.  Let me tell you that ram was one unhappy camper.  With a small gap in between the fence and the trailer, a small gap where I happened to be standing, the ram with his head lowered went through the gap.  Meanwhile I'm dangling off the side of the trailer trying to kick him in his snout as he tries to keep going.  Calling Tessa, I get her circled around, get the ram turned around and use her to push him back into the pen.

Deep breath.  Feet back on solid ground with Tessa guarding the gap, I get some alfalfa to try and coerce the ram into the trailer.  No go.  Finally, my dad puts a rope around the ram's neck and drags him into the trailer.  Sigh.  Ram in, door shut, dad pulls the trailer up to the house.  I notice Mr. Ram trying to climb out of the trailer.  He was not impressed.  The ram, not my dad.

Once reached Norm's, do you think the ram would leave?  Nope, he had to stand at the door staring out.  So once again I'm dangling off the side trying to reach in far enough to tap him on his bum and get him moving.  He eventually left.  And I was left a far happier individual with no ram to chase me.  (If you're wondering Norman gets some lamb from one of the babies that will be kept and finished for the freezer.)

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