IMG_2062This blog post has lots of pictures of sheep. Why? Because my iPhoto file contains hundreds of sheep pictures from hiking in England.

                  It’s not that sheep are friendly. They’re not. It’s not that they’re interested in us. They’re not. For every shot of a sheep looking at the camera, there are zillions of pictures with sheep faces firmly attached to the grass.

                  And it’s dangerous taking pictures of sheep. You get so enthralled that you forget where you’re placing your feet. If you’re in a pasture with sheep, then you are also in deep sheep doo-doo.

                  Those colors painted on the sheep are called smits. Farmers use them to temporarily brand a sheep – to match ewes and lambs, for instance, or just to tell their herd from the one next door.IMG_2010

                  Sheep tempt you to make baaaaaaad puns (like that one). “How ewe?” I ask the sheep in the mornings. “Ewe so cute.”

                  An English farmer who raised both cows and sheep told me, “ Cows are affectionate. They nuzzle up and love you. From sheep, you get nothing.”

 

(Photo by Judy Leaver)

(Photo by Judy Leaver)

Actually, what you do get is very smelly boots at the end of your hike (“eau de ewe”). Doesn’t matter how much you scrub. After walking in England, the boots acquire a faint green tinge from grass which has made an end-to-end journey.

 

 

These are goats, not sheep. Equally photogenic.

These are goats, not sheep. Equally photogenic.

And yet, aren’t they cute? Awwwww. You just want to grab one and hug it. You can pet a goat, but a sheep is never going to let you get that close.