Tuesday, September 11, 2012

9/11 Blues, Improved

Usually I consciously avoid media and thinking about events associated with 9/11 in the weeks approaching the anniversary. The sadness that the memories of that day bring up are baggage that I don't want to bring with me to school. For some absurd reason I thought that the ten year anniversary last year was the magic eraser and that I would no longer have to deal with the emotions. But of course there were stories on the radio this morning. Military veterans had set up their flags on the overpasses. My reflection was interrupted as the Alpaca Farmer called me on the phone. He was on his way down to the barn, wanting information on another local news item. There was a lot of humming down there... And then there were maybe more animals than normal...
Sure enough, SIX animals in the barn at Shady Grove Alpacas - the new cria had been born in the night and was already dry, wandering about, taking a dust bath, etc! How can your mood not lift with this wonderful image in your head! It's a BOY, by the way! And he weighs 17.7 pounds.
What to name him? All animals born here at Shady Grove get named after songs by the Grateful Dead. We had thrown around names like Jack Straw, China Doll, Stella Blue, but those did not seem fitting for the day or the animal. We started thinking of commemorating the day, and other titles like "US Blues" (sometimes referred to as Wave the Flag) and "Chimes of Freedom" started sounding like better options. "Chimes" was written and performed by Bob Dylan with the Grateful Dead, but the Dead never covered it on their own. Coincidentally, Bob Dylan's 35th album came out today as well, so it would have been another nice connection to the day. In the end, calling the cria by one or the other word in the title did not have the right feel to it for us. And there happens to be another song named "The Eleven." The eleventh of September. The eleventh anniversary. Perfect. We will be calling the little man 'Leven for short. (The music geek in me is thrilled that the song is written in 11/4 time!)
The little animal is very red, but we suspect that it is the usual amniotic fluid stain on the fiber, and that the little guy will be a dark brown or black like his mom by the time the fleece grows out.
'Leven has a funny crimp in his tail. Curls? A weak bone?
Playing on the lawn with Cassidy. Cassidy is the slightly bigger cria on the left. The grown-ups are munching some grass. Go figure.
'Greta is the BEST mom ever. She is humming almost non-stop and looking after the 'Leven in all ways possible.
Off on a first adventure into the corner of the pen. Greta is following right behind. Later folks, there is some exploring to do!

1 comment:

Holly White said...

What a gift! What a delight to have a new animal in the world to be loved!