The Old Lady found herself on a ten hour layover in the Phoenix AZ airport, so she strapped on her backpack and boots and hiked the entire airport – all four concourses! – looking for something good to eat.
And she found it!
Across from Gate B21 is a restaurant called Cowboy Ciao (how cutesy).
The Old Lady ordered the rather unfortunately-named Testosterone Salad (“light on the testerone,” she joked with the server).
It was amazing.
Big chunks of port-charred tenderloin on greens covered with crumbles and dressing of gorgonzola cheese… possibly the best airport meal ever!
And if you are lucky enough to get Chrissy as your server, you will have a fine experience along with your delicious meal!
The bleating of sheep
Haunts my dreams
Where is the ram?
Where are the lambs?
For the warmth and weight of a sheepdog
Pressed against my back in the bed
I miss the meadow
The smell of the barn
Of cloven hooves.
The Old Lady has learned from watching sheep:
Sheep not only mingle freely with all colors together, they also live in harmony with other species. In fact, sheep and chickens help each other!
Sheep stick together. No one gets left behind.
Sheep share. They never fight for food. They even share leafy treats!
“Sheep show human beings how peaceful life can be,” mused The Old Lady.
The Old Lady notes that there really are black sheep.
Also brown sheep.
And speckled sheep.
The wooly coats tend to mask what lies underneath.
It isn’t until the wool is removed that sheep show their true colors!
Sheep are not the only cash crop here at Meadowlark Farm.
More than a hundred chickens roam freely eating bugs, tilling the soil, and spreading… um… fertilizer.
These busy ladies lay 70-80 eggs every day.
The farm-fresh goodies are egg – zactly what The Old Lady needs to keep up with the gathering!
Sheep are herbivores, getting all the nutrition they need from the grasses and weeds of verdant pastures.
So how do you treat a sheep?
Sheep LOVE leaves… oak, lilac, Apple tree, ANY leaves.
That’s why you don’t see any trees in their pastures.
Sheep just can’t leaf them alone!
Martha, 17 years old
Sammi, 1 year old
Jackie, 8 years old
Somebody asked The Old Lady how she would handle the sheep all by herself.
She has help: three Border Collies, bred and trained to herd sheep.
Martha is retired and wears a jacket to ward off the Idaho chill.
Jackie is an old hand and can handle any lagging lambs.
Sammi watches Jackie and learns by doing, but there isn’t enough work to keep her occupied.
It turns out that one of the hardest parts of the job is throwing the ball to keep Sammi happy.
Ewe would not believe how much energy this dog has!
The sheep of Meadowlark Farm are not wool sheep but hair sheep.
They do not have to be sheared; th
ey gradually shed their hairy coats (note the “cape” on the brown ewe above).
Hair sheep not only eliminate the cost and trauma of shearing, they are resistant to parasites and tend to be better mothers.
Shepherds are reportedly flocking to hair sheep.
Who wool be next?
The Old Lady is relieved that lambing time is over, and no new lambs are expected while the owners are away.
Some of this year’s lambs are not quite weaned, but their moms are over the nursing thing.
The lamb will cry: “Come here, I’m hungry!”
Mom won’t move, but will answer: “No, you come to me!”
After a few days Mom won’t answer at all.
Finally Mom just walks away when the lamb tries to nurse.
Tough sheep love.