Sorry for the postings drought. We are keeping busy.
(click on little photos for bigger version)
Three weeks ago we left our digs in Hamilton and headed seven miles north to do a home-sitting stint at the Hollingsworths. As you recall, we’ve done two workaway stays here- this time the workaway load is smaller, as we take care of the animals.
Finn the border collie/alsatian/newfoundland needs to be walked thrice daily.
It’s another dull day for the ruminants. They like to mosey over to the humans and dog walking the road. Finn can scare the deer and horses, but the buffalo and cattle just think he’s a curiosity.
It’s a different environment here- not like the corner house in Hamilton, leafy pleasantville, USA. Now it’s woodsy wild-west Rockies bordering farmland. On Finn’s rambunctious walk you’d see cattle, buffalo, horses, eagles and hawks, alpacas, owls, Canada geese, cranes, peacocks, and of course deer. (everywhere in the valley there are deer, in town and country, who come down to be near humans and try to escape the constant threat of predators).
We saw a black bear snooping around the neighbors backyard last week, looking for birdfeeders I reckon. The bark of the dog, Finn, changes quite a bit when he goes from barking at a deer to barking when a bear is present. One bark says, “This is my territory.” The other says, “Let me in the house!”
But when Finn confronts another dog, it’s usually the other dog doing the barking.
Old Blue doesn’t bark- he howls. The perfect dog to have on a lot with a barn, a trailer and two confederate flags!
A storm blew through the West earlier in the month. It got cold enough to fire up the woodstove at the Hollingsworths. Here’s a town somewhere east of Bozeman during the storm:
In addition to walking the dog, the boys had to take care of the cats, goats and chickens. The cats and chickens are easy, and so are the goats, except milking Star requires just the right touch. Star was a bit skittish at first about letting us interlopers milk her. It began as a three man job: Owen would feed her grain and keep her head in the stock, Allen would hold the pail so she didn’t kick it over, and I would milk.
Anika, on the other hand, was a breeze to milk. The boys had no trouble with her, so I’d leave and take anxious Finn on his morning walk.
Next: a visit to the State Capitol of Helena