One of my great hopes for this visit has been to learn to do chores. Here at TCA, chores happen around 7:30 and 5 each day.
I've learned a few things. The basic routine: Water, hay, crumbles, poop scoop (euphemistically referred to as "beans"), barrow dump. LATCH THE GATE! Feed and water the cat. Repeat in the boys' pen. And about the 'pacas personalities: The dominant ones are Sassy of the girls, and Gideon of the boys.
Sassy is the sentinel, so when there are coyotes howling, she'll forego her own supper to keep watch outside while the rest of the herd gobbles up their crumbles. When all is well, she's smart enough to stay dry in the barn on a drizzly day. She also is the one who poops on that spot I just scooped clean. In this way, she is a bit like my daughter, who requests a clean diaper when, you know, she needs to make a dirty one.
Gideon is a lot like some man you may have known. That iconic lover/fighter, who is charming right up to the point when, as in this case, he tries to swipe someone's supper. My Grandma Brown would have called him a little sh**, but he would have been her favorite, too.
I'm enjoying chores, as it turns out! A little bit of work outdoors each morning and evening, enjoying success in significant work, and the company of sweet animals. Looking forward to our farm visit this summer, and doing chores in some SUNSHINE!