Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Oh right, goats. Not all of them alive.

So, let's move that political post down on the page and move back to our regularly scheduled programming, shall we? Because, you know, Torsten's birthday happened, and it was great--the perfect combination of relaxed and special. It involved a brunch cooked at home, a trip to a German bakery to purchase a birthday cake, a couple hours of Rock Band Beatles, a small gift of a goat-shaped Christmas ornament, dinner at a fantastic restaurant--oh, and that goat farm thing.

The goat farm was actually kind of awesome. The guy has only been doing it for three years--during which time he's built up his, um, herd? from 1 goat to about 40. He still has a day job, in fact (which is insane). He doesn't normally do tours but he agreed to let us visit, and showed us around the dairy and then let us pet the goats and take photos (full set here).

Goats are pretty cute, as it turns out. And actually, some of them reminded me of Montana. Especially this one:


I think it's the ears, and the quiet pushiness, and the constant curious sniffing. Of course, the goat also checked out my shirt:


But the farmer said, and seems to be right, that goats don't deserve their reputation of eating everything. They TASTE everything, because that's how they figure out what things are, but they don't actually EAT things. And it is definitely true that this goat was not CHEWING on my shirt. She was just... MOUTHING it. Though she did grab on with her teeth when I tried to get her to let go.

Goats also kneel as they're getting up, which, for whatever reason, I find incredibly endearing:


AND, the farm had some yearlings, who were in their own separate field, enjoying playtime:


Unfortunately, the trip was not entirely fun and games. We were standing in one field and I looked over the fence into the yearling field and noticed a goat lying oddly, on its side, with a leg in the air. I said to the farmer, "Is that goat sleeping on its side?" And he looked where I was pointing and said, "That goat's dead!"

Turns out, there were two dead goats, both yearlings. I actually felt kind of bad that we were there--the farmer said this had never happened to him before, and he seemed quite stunned. He was definitely very attached to his goats and it can't have been easy to see two of them dead for no real reason.

It looks like they died of bloat--the farmer said that normally when that happens, the goats bleat and he comes and kind of pumps the bloat out of them, but these two didn't make any noise. And I guess they could have eaten baking soda to help, but their feeder was out of baking soda.

We were talking about it in the car on the way home, and it does seem like the type of thing that happens to everyone as they start to expand their new business--a little mistake, like not putting out two trays of baking soda, that seems inconsequential but ends up costing you. But usually the cost would just be money, and in this case it was the lives of two goats.

Not exactly the best thing that could have happened on Torsten's birthday. But still, the visit was great, and we are definitely planning to go back in the spring when there will be lots of baby goats. Torsten can't wait. (And actually, kind of, neither can I.)

23 comments:

Hillary said...

Glad Torsten had a nice birthday, and, by the way, you look great. I know from reading here and at Bodies that the weight-loss surgery process hasn't always been easy, but you can definitely see results.

Shelly Overlook said...

You do look fabulous! Am so glad Torsten got the bday of his dreams surrounded by goats (except for the poor dead babies, that's sad).

PeaceLoveMath said...

Actually, I've always liked goats. They ARE cute. Except for when your campsite is right near a pen with two of them, and someone who goes on a jog every morning at 6:30 AM causes them to bleat loudly and wake you up. But I even liked those goats.

My hubby and I have this random dream of owning a house on a bit more land (as opposed to the 0.23 acre suburban neighborhood rancher we live in now) and owning a couple of goats.

Out of curiosity, what does a goat farm produce? Goat milk? Goat cheese? Some Indian restaurants serve goat meat dishes...I feel like the cheese-making thing would be a whole additional big project, but the goats must do something other than just hang out. Something that, you know, makes money.

Sarah said...

I haven't even read the post yet, but wanted to comment right away after I saw your picture. You look awesome!! OMG! You lost so much more weight since the surgery. Keep up the good work!

SoMi's Nilsa said...

"That goat is dead" reminds me of a long time ago when we were pet sitting (for a year!) for a bird. My brother ran to get me, saying the bird was so cute, it was sleeping on its side. I went to look and said, "That bird isn't sleeping; it's dead!" It made my brother burst into tears. hahaha.

Second ... you look really, really great. Most of the photos we see of you are head on - and you can tell you're losing a lot of weight. But, the photo with the goat, well, the slight profile view shares that much more of your story. Awesome, Jess!

missris said...

Well everyone already beat me to it but I wanted to say that your waist looks tiny in that picture! The goats are super cute. There's a place near my parents house that has fainting goats and I just love them.

Jessica said...

I wanted to comment on your picture too - you look so great!!!

d e v a n said...

I don't really *get* the goat thing, but I'm glad you guys had fun!!!

.:*aMbAr*:. said...

Awwwww I would have probably died of a heart attack if a goat tried to "mouth" my shirt. You know cause I'm really brave and all *cough* but it does look super cute!!! And I had NEVUUR seen a goat kneeel. That is surprising. See? You DO learn something new everyday.

Happy Bday Torsten!!

Swistle said...

I...BAKING SODA? Goats need to eat baking soda or they die of bloat? It seems wrong to put this in the "Ya Learn Somethin' New Every Day!" category when goats died, but still.

Children of the 90s said...

We went to a drive through safari that had a goat farm, they really did try to eat everything, including our shirts, the bags of food (not the food, the actual bags), and my hair. They were adorable nonetheless.

artemisia said...

How fun! I would LOVE to visit the goats. I really want two of them. I think they'd be a hoot.

el-e-e said...

Well the goats are cute, but you look incredible! All the work you're doing in the gym is paying off!

Misty said...

I love farms. :) And I really like this quirky birthday thing you guys did. How much more memorable than anything I would have thought of!

And you look amazing. Congratulations on all that HARD work!

Stevie said...

I think it is SO cute that Torsten loves goats. What a great way to spend a birthday. Looks like the weather was pretty great, too! My brother lives about a block away from a house that has a few goats, and my 2 year old niece loves to go up and feed them baby carrots. She loves it so much, in fact, that when they buy a costco sized bag of baby carrots, she won't let anyone eat them because "those are for the AMINALS!" So cute!

And HELLO, you look SO. GOOD.

Alice said...

wait, baking soda DE-bloats goats? (HA. debloats goats.) i feel like it would.. i don't know.. re-bloat them. doesn't baking soda make stuff rise when you cook with it? i am obviously unclear on goat / baking soda interactions.

Kristie said...

Despite the poor goats that passed (sad!), it looks like you had a good time. I met a goat once named Patrick that would head-butt you in the butt to get your attention! He was a hoot!

P.S. You are looking FAB, lady!

Megan said...

Ah! So cute! I am, for whatever reason, more interested in goats than your average wouldn't-be-caught-dead-on-a-farm girl, so that picture of the goat "mouthing" your shirt is just too adorable.

(And yes, let me be the fifteenth to say that you look lovely in the picture!)

The Tomball Three said...

Uh .... have you seen that picture of yourself (with the goat)? you look INCREDIBLE!

keep on goin', girl!

Andhari said...

It's really sad about two goats dying, but it lookslike Torsten had a good birthday. All activities in the itinerary sounds fun, and you guys should definitely go back when the babies are born :) baby goats are cuter than grown goats, right?:)

Ps. Everyone's right, you look great!

Jummy said...

Aww, the thought of baby goats frolicking (and they do!) is almost enough to make me not think about the poor goats that died. I'm glad you guys had a good time though.

3carnations said...

When I was about 4, I went to a petting zoo and a goat pulled on my Garanimals belt. It scared me, and I stayed away from goats for a long time. Now I adore them. We feed them each time we go to the zoo, as there are several dozen of them in the Children's Zoo area.

Anonymous said...

sorry you had to see dead goats...that sucks