You know that moment when you make that fateful decision and say “Who am I going to see at the Tractor Supply at 7:30 p.m. on a Monday? These Muck boots and this dirty old ski parka are FINE?” That is a bad moment. Poor decision making processes are at work here. It never fails. Ever.
I’m in the Tractor Supply, minding my own business — and that of my goats — and bothering the nice employee who knew far more about goats than I do. Which is to say: nothing.
I was deeply embroiled in my new found passion for selenium or no selenium in mineral salt and asking myself if I could REALLY pledge to keep my feed blocks dry? Truly? Do I have it in me?
There, across the shiny floor of the Tractor Supply (why do they keep it so clean in there? Do they not realize where most of their target demographic has come from?) I see a mother from school. We are not close but we’ve done coffee. You know how that goes.
She’s tiny, like a pixie, and cute and stylish and everything I am NOT as I stand in Tractor Supply in Muck boots and an old ski parka and I probably smell like goats (do I smell like goats?) because I was chasing a few just a tad earlier.
It’s all the fault of the goats. Why do I have goats? I would like to think that, had such an election existed back in high school, I would definitely have been voted “Girl most likely to never have goats” and certainly to never have them running loose in her yard. Perhaps I just flatter myself.
Do you know that I wore high heels to school my entire junior and most of my senior year? Yes I did. Pink ones. With little lace ankle socks (It was the 80s. Forgive). I dressed up. I did my hair for over an hour every morning. My lip gloss budget rivaled our grocery bill. I was high maintenance. I had standards.
Now I’m out in public in a ponytail and barn attire. I wasn’t wearing sweat pants but really, that was just pure dumb luck.
My daughter’s classmate’s mother (yes we are THAT close) spies us. She says “hello pretty lady!” because she has a well developed sense of humor. She also has on cute shoes. Adorable shoes really. Her hair is styled. Heck, her hair is COMBED. She is buying dog food. Dog food I understand.
She is not buying a mineral salt block, 8 foot ground rod (he said 6 foot but I’m getting him 8 foot, because nothin’s too good for my man), and pink ribbon to tie on the electric fence in hopes that the newest goats will get the memo, electric fence equals bad.
We think one of our two newest goats is either incredibly stupid or incredibly smart. It’s so often difficult to differentiate between the two with animals. Is Billy (Yes, Billy the goat. Original, no?) simply unable to figure out that the electric fence will sting every single time he wanders through it, or is he so smart that the momentary buzz is worth the heady bid for freedom? Who knows?
Unlike me, my acquaintance of the good hair and clean shoes is not going to spend the night wondering if the goats are, in fact, still in their fence or have gotten out. She is not going to keep her coat and boots by the door at the ready if she has to thwart an escape.
She didn’t turn down a lunch date with girlfriends and plan to stay home all day to insure that that the new goats are settling in. She won’t be going to the fence multiple times and making what she hopes are passably believable “goat sounds” to draw her goats out of hiding and thus insure they are actually still IN that pasture.
She will remain stylish and hip. Her slacks will remain crisply creased, her hair beautifully style and I bet her footwear will never touch pasture mud. Poor thing. I pity her. Sure she’s pretty but I don’t think she really knows how to LIVE.
(Kymberly Foster Seabolt is the proud if disheveled owner of three adorable goats. She welcomes comments c/o LifeOutLoud@comcast.net, P.O. Box 38, Salem, OH 44460 or follow her online at http://KymberlyFosterSeabolt.com.)