Sunday, August 26, 2007

Blame It On The Moon

Every month, during the week of the full moon, I get insomnia. I don't know why, but it affects me like caffeine, and I lie awake all night with jittery, excess energy fizzing through me. I always say the moon is too "loud" during those times.

Of course, it doesn't actually make a sound that I can hear, but it does leave me with the same strained, jittery, exhausted feeling that I get when I've been stuck in a loud, crowded place for too long. It makes me long for the "quieter" phases of the moon.

I do have a bit of synesthesia, so sometimes things affect me a little differently than most people. The moon can feel "loud" to me. Numbers and letters have colors in my mind. When I have my eyes closed and I hear a sudden sound, I see geometric patterns flash on the insides of my eyelids. Different sounds make different patterns.

It's an interesting trait to have. It does influence my life, but only in minor ways. For example, if I got a white cat, I could never give it a name that began with "O" because to me, O is always black. One time, in an art museum, I was fascinated by one particular group of abstract paintings that did seem to give off a faint, audible wave of sound that only I could hear.

Anyway, the moon is waxing gibbous, nearly full, so last night, I lay awake until after 4:00 a.m. I spent the time worrying about the guy who was coming to look at horses today. What else am I going to do at 4:00 a.m. but worry?

I thought I'd be exhausted, but I was up again by 8:30, doing housework and farm chores. Our goof-off day yesterday must have helped, because we got a lot done.

After Ken and I cleaned the messy kitchen and bathroom, I went out and rebandaged Peri's leg. The hole is now nearly filled in with pink flesh, but it still smells bad. I have to wash my hands so many times after I come in, to get the stink off me that Ken is starting to call me Lady MacBeth!

One of our smallest lambs died during the night. Yesterday's unbearable heat and humidity was apparently the last straw for her. I feel bad, because she was really cute, but realistically she was too small to breed this fall with the other sheep, so she was not one of our more valuable sheep.

Naturally, I try to keep all my sheep alive if I can, but when they do sometimes die, I try to look at it as natural culling of the ones that could not adapt quite as well to the specific environment on my farm. In truth, it's easier on the flock for one susceptible animal to die than for it to be saved and allowed to produce lots of equally susceptible babies who will each require extra care in the future.

Does that outlook mean I'm hard-hearted? Or just practical?

After Ken disposed of the lamb for me down in the compost heap by the woods, I scrubbed the slimy blackish-green algae out of all the horse and sheep water troughs, while Ken got started mucking out the weaning paddock. It felt good to get so much done that had been put off for too long.

Late in the afternoon, the fellow came to look at the horses. First he came into the pasture with the herd and visited them all. They all seemed to like him, and crowded around to visit.

We took first Char and then Scylla out to the round pen and let him tack them up and ride each of them a little. Char was pretty good, except when the gigantic horse flies were biting her---then she bucked! But as soon as we swatted the flies for her, she was good again. She was a little distracted, since it was the first time she'd really been separated from her baby for any length of time, but for the most part she tried to obey. I felt kind of envious watching someone else ride her, because I enjoy her so much myself, but I get so few opportunities to ride.

Scylla was a little more antsy, but she really seemed to fit the fellow nicely. He looked good on her, and he said she felt good too. The only problem was that he smokes, and she seemed to dislike his cigarette smoke. She'd turn her head away from the smell of it, just like a typical nonsmoker would!

After the man was done riding, we talked for a while. I had originally offered him a free lease agreement, but we are in such desperate need for money, I told him I was willing to consider an outright sale. His budget matched perfectly the price I was thinking of asking, so that's a positive thing.

He's going to think about it. And I need to think about it too. I don't have a problem selling Scylla, but I really don't want to sell Char. I would hate to split them up. But on the other hand, why should I have to sell the one horse that I'm most attached to?

The man was also mildly considering Boo, who is so gentle, she would probably make a safer mount for his 10-year-old son, even if she does have less riding experience. If he would buy Scylla and Boo instead of Scylla and Char, that would make me really, really happy. I guess I should tell him that.

It's late now, and I'm really really tired, after a busy day and only 4 hours of sleep. I hope that I'm exhausted enough that I will actually sleep through the moon tonight.

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