Wednesday, May 11, 2011

I'm a sucker for a cute face

The Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival was last weekend. It's an occasion for joyous overwhelm, with tens of thousands of people within one single fairground. Fibers and textures and colors are everywhere. And people. At a certain point, wool blindness takes over and it's simply not possible to see anything clearly anymore. That's when I escape into the sheep barns.

This year I met and fell in love with a certain Lincoln yearling ram. Once his buddies realized I did not come bearing edible gifts, they lost interest. But this guy couldn't get enough love.

As a rule, sheep don't like to be confined in small spaces. They also don't like change, and they certainly don't take great comfort in being suddenly surrounded by crowds of people and other strange sheep. Which is to say that most sheep at these shows are pretty freaked out.

But this guy, for whatever reason, decided I was safe. Even the sweet young redhead responsible for his well-being was a little surprised. "They haven't even been worked with yet," she said, shaking her head. She went off to help her friend in the ring, and I remained.

The more I rubbed his cheek, the more I could feel him relaxing and calming down. So there I stood, rubbing his cheek, feeling those warm puffs of sheep breath on my hand, in what can only be described as a moment. That lasted many moments.

If I'd had room in my suitcase, I promise you I would've taken him home with me. Instead, as it turns out, he's due for a shearing this week. And in a few weeks, a very big box will arrive on my doorstep. Because really, what else could I do?

14 comments:

Lorna's Laces said...

He will make a magnificent something. Wonder what he wants it to be? Jealous!

Seanna Lea said...

That is such a sweet lamb. I think you did a great thing in not smuggling him home. This way many people will get the pleasure of his companyin years to come.

Riaknits said...

How lovely! I met one like that at Rhinebeck 2009. She was sticking her nose out at passersby & enjoying the love of knitters. She was a sweet merino & if I didn't live in NYC, I'd have been very tempted to take her home.

Nanci said...

He knew it was the yarn whisperer approaching and welcomed her calm, reassuring touch.... and you will always have a bit of him with you too.

My heart is full just reading this-thanks for sharing your moment with us.

Kelly said...

You behave better than me, I traded my Jeep for a Yukon ...more room for sheep!

Deborah Robson said...

Makes perfect sense to me. I'm especially fond of Lincoln . . . sheep and their wool.

cat@catbordhi.com said...

Awww. I can almost feel his soft little wooly face. I wonder what his wool will become, and if you will see him again next year? Maybe you can visit him wearing him. Awwwwww.

Jane said...

So now you are a sheep whisperer, too.

Peggy said...

This was the first S&W for me when I too wanted to take a lamb or two home. I thought, I have a station wagon, surely it/they could make it 1/2 hour home in the back? I wonder if I encountered the same sheep? There was one very seductive one... He must have been the show's Casanova!

debd94 said...

Thank you for sharing some sheep porn!
I can get my fix, and then I don't have to argue with my husband about where a lamb would fit in our backyard :)

Mady said...

You can just see the contentment coming into his eyes. I'm so glad you bought the fleece. A lovely moment with a warm remembrance to come.

Liz said...

I could feel the serenity... Such a nice way to start the morning! And a lovely reminder of where the fibers we adore so much come from.

Lanea said...

Sooooooo sweet. I fell for a little goat, but then I always do.

ciproano said...

Perhaps this black ram was the Universe's loving response to your having accommodated the "black hole energy" person in your life.

It seems almost biblical: what was taken away by the ass was returned with a reward by the ram.