Wool Less Sheep and Disturbing Sounds in the Night.

Well, we are at our last home sit in the South Island at Upper Moutere. We’re looking after about 100 sheep, 50 lambs, 1 dog and 1 cat. Lovely farm setting and comfortable house. We will be here for three weeks. Time to do a bit of an explore and to hunt down some Australian Wood Ducks. Never heard of them? Join the club. I had never heard of them until yesterday but apparently they live in the district.


A view of the sheep and their lambs.


A close up of one of the hoggets. They are Wiltshire sheep and require no shearing.  Their wool just drops off their backs. And this one has already lost most of it’s wool. Hence the straggly look.

The house is  about 500 metres from the rural road. Not very much traffic and it is wonderfully quiet here. We watched a bit of television in the evening, read some books and turned into bed.

I woke. It was pitch black. Was that thunder? No, it sounded like a large sliding door opening. Crickey, do we have a burglar? Better get up and have a peek out the windows. My goodness, there’s someone out there shining a torch round. “Judy” I called out. “There’s someone out there. I’m going out”. I picked up my torch and tore outside. Where is he? Went round the house shining the torch into all the sheds and into  the cars. No sign of him and slowly my  brain started to function. What am I doing out here armed with a 6 inch torch and dressed in my pyjamas? There could be half a dozen of them. I could be in serious trouble here. I hope it’s just a puny malnourished weakling with no physical prowess. And then I saw it. The roof ladder had slid down off the roof and the top end was now propped up against the roof guttter. That was the noise I must have heard. Still no sign of the burglar. Judy came  out the door and I said, “look at this”.

“That’s what I must have heard,” she said, “the ladder sliding down the roof,” and as we talked, it slowly became clearer. Judy had been unable to sleep, having problems with her hay fever, and was in the lounge when the noise happened. She had grabbed her torch and shot up the stairs where the noise had come from and was shining her torch about. That was the torch light I saw out the down stair windows, hence no burglar, no panic, and no threat of grevious bodily harm. What a relief. Just a problem, how to get this huge heavy  ladder down without smashing windows, gardens etc. I looked at the time. 4am. Back to bed and sleep. Hope the solution comes to me while I sleep. Later in the day we used the forks on the tractor and moved the ladder to behind one of the sheds. My problem solved.


This is the other side of the house  with an aluminium ladder. The one that came down was made from 100 x 50 mm timber and was 6 metres long. It had soaked up some rain water and was very heavy.


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