As those tenacious folk who have been with us for a while will know, the very first farmy animal to reside on the Homestead was The Farmer’s baby, the divine Miss Sapphire.
Delivered to the The Farmer’s place of work after being found roaming the sordid streets of downtown Rangiora, she and The Farmer quickly built up a bond which required her to travel home with him each weekend. The problem was while she adored The Farmer, she really didn’t care for the rest of us to the extent that, if The Farmer decided to be a little social and leave The Homestead, much baa-ing and bleating would result. This noise had a rather dramatic effect on the resident final year Engineering student, who was knee-deep in pre-exam prep at this time, and so Sapphire was ruled big enough to handle Farmer-free weekends and returned to the farm park.
Over the years, many joyous events, stories, and ludicrous photo opportunities occurred
some which were documented in this tabloid, until the day came that The Farmer spread his wings and left the farm park. Of course, Sapphire had to go, too, but not to us, we hastened to add. Oh no! Her persistent baa-ing, the cause of much bad Goat Herd language back in the day, had grown in volume along with the rest of her and the suburban homesteader lives in fear of the Council Noise Control Officer above all else. Rather, she took up residence in the wonderful Kingdom of Melton (West) where the royal family are known to take in all manner of waifs and strays.
But with the change of Homestead address came a change of expectations. Here in the country, animals can make all the noise they want, so Miss Sapphire is finally home. She’s even learning to like the rest of us (as long as we’re holding the sheep treats), and is very much the leader of the
pack flock. Yes, we’re branching out into shepherding.
This new venture has not been without its trials resulting in a bit of tearful hole-digging (for which there are a great many theories among our community advisers, but no clear-cut answers), and our flock now stands at three.
join Sapphire at the feed trough (the use of which has our real-farm neighbours smiling indulgently) each day
and we’re embarking on a whole new learning curve.