We are blessed with lots of friends, and so far this year we've had visitors almost every weekend. For a while I felt bad - all these people were coming to see us and the farm, but in the middle of the coldest, grayest stretch of the year. I wondered why those nearest and dearest would be clamoring to come for a visit at a time when the most exciting possible activity would be sledding face first into a burdock bush. I told myself it was just that, that the sheer force of our four personalities and the nascent enterprise were together an irresistible draw, weather be damned.
After the past couple days, however, I have decided that there may have been a slight self-serving aspect to these early visits. Two days ago Ed and I had to climb up onto the roof of our little barn to replace the section that got torn off. It was mildly terrifying, but neither of us was injured, and we were successful. But from that rooftop vantage, and more generally walking about the farmyard now that the snow has melted, the sheer amount of work necessary just to make it possible to weedwhack the grounds dawned on me. Every patch of grass has moldering equipment in it. Every path has old, weedy fence lining it. Every field has thousands of bones in it.
Yes, bones. I mentioned the dogs in a past post. Apparently this large group of canines subsisted not just on the standard dry and canned food of which we have already thrown away ample evidence, but also on a healthy ration of cow and goat bones, the latter of which we assume were homegrown. As a result, it's not possible to take three steps without tripping over the femur of a cow or a rack of goat ribs. That might sound appetizing to some people, but it's actually pretty gross. So far we've collected five or six wheelbarrows full, and there are untold quantities to come.
So future guests have been warned. Duties concomitant to visiting in fair weather may include bone collecting duty.