October 9 – 10, 2013
After a lovely 3 weeks in the UK, it was time to head back to France. We took a quick flight to La Rochelle, rented a car and drove back to the farm. We needed to pick up our bikes, return Alex’s suitcase and spend one more day on the farm. We had missed the work on the farm while we were gone.
It was great to see all the goats, some of them seemed to remember us. The ladies were immediately affectionate, whereas it took a week before we received that kind of attention when we first arrived. We were surprised to see a noticeable difference in the size of the babies. Isatis, our favorite little one, was no longer able to escape by squeezing through the slate of the fence.
We were able to spend a lot of time catching up with Alex and Mathilde, an intern, and we all worked together very well. It was nice that everyone knew the routine, so we could get the work done quickly and focus on having fun with the goats.
I also had the opportunity to watch the “marriage” of several ladies with two of the billies. At one point, Alex had explained the mating rituals of goats to Chandler and I, but the act sounded strange enough that I needed to see it for myself. To attract the females, a male will urinate on himself, slap the female’s belly with his hoof while simultaneously tickling her ear with his tongue. Not the most romantic courtship, but it worked.
We also made sure to eat enough cheese to last us a long time. Alex makes the BEST organic goat cheese! I would highly recommend that if you are in her area, check out her farm, La Ferme des Croq’Épines, and get some of her cheese.
Being on the farm was a great choice and a highlight of the trip.