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Autumn arrives

Posted 9/28/2009 1:36pm by Julie Hurst / Roy Brubaker.

Autumn is certainly on its way.  It is as humid and warm as August but the goldenrods and wild asters are in bloom and the sugar maples are beginning to blush.  The crickets and other buzzing, droning insects have crept below my open window and their sounds are incessant.  I like their sounds but I can't say that it is singing or chirping like I've heard it described.  I think I may have smashed a wooly bear caterpillar on the road too.  I hate when I do that.  I return to remove squirrels that dash out and surprise me only to meet sudden death, but the catapillars... I just drive on feeling badly about my speeding colliding with their very focused and confident procession across the highway.  Autumn.  It's kind of like nature saying 'death happens -- Let's dress up and have a wine and cheese party.'  I love this season -- everything is so lovely and subdued.
Harry, our bottle lamb from the earlier this spring, has relapsed into his pre-return-to-flock behavior.  I guess he just wearied of pretending to be a normal sheep.   He has drifted away from the other lambs, grazing alone by the edge of the fence.  Mac accepts this about him.  When we ask him to move the lambs, he nods a familiar "Hey there Harry" to his oddball friend then dashes off the round up the "real" lambs.  Roy and I are trying to encourage Harry to go with the crowd and just do what the other sheep are doing, but it is not working very well.  Last Sunday we moved the lambs to a fresh paddock, all except Harry.  On Monday morning I saw him lying out on hillside paddock to the west of our house.  Mac and I went out to bring him over.  Of course Mac was useless as a herding dog on this outing.  He and Harry sniffed at each other like old buddies.  I put a leash around Harry's neck but halfway to the next paddock he lay down and wouldn't budge.  So I picked him up and carried him the rest of the way.  He is only about 30 - 35 pounds, but I smelled like a sheep for the rest of the day.  Now he is with the other lambs but not part of them. That's okay.  He is our hermit Harry living out his solitary existence within the bleating crowd.  It could be worse; he could be a wooly bear caterpillar in early Autumn.