Wednesday, 27 June 2012

A writer's life with goats

I caved in yesterday and wrote about 300 words on Doom. I'm never going to know how much it would have hurt by the next day, though, because I have this awesome life involving goats. The ways you can get injured around goats could make a book (and in fact have appeared in several of my drafts). I've been kicked in the head, had a goat fall off the milking stand and land on me, been dragged through mud, almost dislocated my shoulder trying to stop an invasion of what seemed like a thousand goats...

Anyway, last night we had to catch Boris, one of the bucks. It was cold, dark and frosty, which has nothing to do with anything except that when I get to the part where I fall over it's into half-frozen mud and goat droppings. Fun, right?

Standard procedure involves going into the paddock and picking out the boy we want, then taking him into a different yard to be introduced to his new lady friend. The boys are pets, so its usually more a matter of pushing the unwanted ones out of the way than putting any effort into catching the one we want. All except Boris, anyway. Boris seems to think that escaping from the humans is more important than meeting the doe.

Dad and I decided to corner him in one of the shelters, where we could get hold of him without stirring him up too much. It seemed like it was going to work, but then Boris seemed to realise for the first time that Dad was close enough to grab his collar. Boris bolted.

Straight into me.

An adult buck of a dairy breed weighs about as much as an adult male human, so this was the point where I ended up in the freezing mud. I have a nice big bruise on my hip to show for it, but that wasn't where it ended because somehow during the process of being knocked flying by a hundred-kilo buck I managed to get hold of his collar and some neck fur. That's better proof of my insanity than any writing-related thing I've ever done. A mere human hanging off his collar wasn't going to stop Boris.

A nasty twist and those fingers that were supposed to be hanging onto Boris's collar didn't seem to be able to do their job any more. The goat ran for it and the crazy chick curled up in the mud and felt that special combination of pain and nausea that means your next coherent thought is going to be a question about whether or not you've broken something.

Not broken, thankfully. Strapped up tight enough that I can't bend my wrist, it doesn't even hurt any more than usual to type. I wouldn't like to lift anything, open doors or - well, do anything at all that involves my wrist - but at least I can write. It's a reminder, though, that the original cause of my RSI/tendonitis isn't the computer. It's a series of incidents like last night and three months of hell last year where I had to hand-milk fifty goats every day.

So, how to wrap this up? We did eventually catch Boris, but he continued to be uncooperative and had his bucky duties taken over by Selwyn. I had my wrist checked out - just a sprain - and some nice thick bandages and a night's sleep later I'm back in action. Oh, and I ended up with a fun story to tell on my blog.


  1. Great story Siana. Oh my goodness - goats! I lived on a small farm growing up, and yeah, the stories would make a book. I'm just getting my blog going an understanding why we blog. Hope it's as enjoyable as this one was. Real life, eh?

  2. Boris reminds me of You Bastard the camel from one of Terry Pratchett's books. Might have been Reaper Man? Or Jingo...

  3. It gets worse - I just realised Boris is named after the horse in Going Postal.