Friday, February 27, 2009

Ewe did what?

My Belgian friend and I cycle together. We've done so once per week for the past year and a half and invariably come home with a story. Our very first ride resulted in a near-miss encounter with a neighbourhood bull.  Typically I return home both physically and mentally exhausted. French is hard enough on its own, let alone at 20kph.   Yesterday's experience, however, was exhilarating and one I won't soon forget.  

We'd noticed the pasture on the outward journey: two dozen sheep, both white and brown, and a dozen or so lambs, sprinting from one end of the field to the other.  Truly the picture of spring, not late February. We commented on how cute they looked, but rode on. It was on the trip home that we paused. A ewe stood apart from the others beneath a lonesome oak. She scratched the earth with her front hooves, then bore down, her sides tensing, her breath held. Again and again, both standing and on her side, she worked until her baby appeared: a puddle of white, slick and still. We watched, waiting. It was born breach and placenta first. After an eternity it moved, just it's head, but it moved. The lamb was alive. Amazing.


  1. oh wow that sounds really cool. Bike rides in these parts would pale in comparison.