Friday night I dreamt about sheep, so it was fitting to spend most of Saturday with them. Dan and I checked on the sheep that are grazing a nature preserve, only to find they had escaped their pen (for the 7th time in 9 days). It seemed likely the sheep had assistance from local kids in this latest breakout, plus we found part of the electric fence that may not have been functioning properly. These situations are dangerous and stressful for the sheep (not to mention the shepherds), especially if the sheep have been harassed by people or dogs or they are near a frequently traveled road. The whole flock can be skittish and unsettled for days.
In the middle of all this Dan got a call that the cows he grazes for someone else were out in the road, so he had to go tend to that situation. Paul, another shepherd intern, came out to meet me and we corralled the sheep and built them a new, hopefully escape-proof pen. This took all morning and part of the afternoon but the time flew by and before I knew it the work day was done.
I really enjoy the physicality of this work - moving through the world, seeing the changes that come with the seasons; interacting with different people and creatures; using my body in the work. In our culture physical labor has been degraded to the point of being worth very little...just think how little farm field laborers are paid, when they are probably the hardest workers in the country. Why is this? Why does our culture value the work of the mind so much more than the work of the body? It is the work of farmers, stockmen and laborers out in the physical world that feed and clothe the rest of us...why don't more people realize this and see how incredibly valuable it is? I wish my "real" job (working at a computer) was anywhere near as interesting and engaging as my days working with the sheep.
Back at home I checked in on the garden and admired Matt's handiwork at weeding and planting eggplants!
We also celebrated Mother's Day a little early with a family dinner and dessert - I made the strawberry rhubarb pie!
On Sunday, Matt and I treated ourselves to dine out at The Green Boheme, a raw foods restaurant in Sac.
"Raw vegan – or “living food” –refers to fruits, vegetables, and other natural ingredients that have not been heated above 105°. This approach ensures food remains in a living state, preserving the maximum amount of vitamins, phyto-nutrients, and enzymes to nourish your body."
The food tastes wonderful and is artfully crafted; I don't have the discipline, time or money to eat like that all the time but it is a treat I enjoy on occasion.