I took a trip to Georgia on Tuesday--flew into Atlanta in the evening, picked up my rental car (a RAV4, which was quite sporty), and drove to Stone Mountain for a meeting I was to attend the next day. I was hoping I could get up early and walk to the top of Stone Mountain (which isn't much of a mountain by anyone's standards), but alas the fellow checking me into the hotel noted that the trail was clear on the other side of the park, and I knew there was no way I could get there, do the hike, and get back to the hotel in time for the start of the conference at 8. Otherwise, I might have had some nice photos to share.
So what made this trip notable? Well, there was a Land Forces Conference in full swing at the resort. By Land Forces, I mean military, and lots of 'em, from all over the world! And GA State Troopers crawling all over the place too. We figured we were either very, very safe or in grave danger (if the secret had gotten out). I don't think the meeting planners at TBM would have arranged a meeting at this resort had they known what we were in for, but of course what else was going on there was kept very quiet. So instead we just got the surprise on arrival. My boss said that helicopters brought in military brass on Tuesday (I missed that), and whatever satellite and other electronics they had going on wreaked annoying havoc with the sound systems being used in our meetings. One of our consultants said they created quite an upset when a large group gathered in the rotunda area to get on buses to go out to the WIKA plant, as they were congregating and blocking the troopers' lines of vision. Oh my.
But, really, who can resist a conference center full of (mostly) men in uniform? (Okay, maybe some folks can, but I've always had an affinity for military men! Had I known, I wouldn't have been neraly as resistant of my boss' entreaties to go in the first place!)
Alas, I was there for less than 24 hours, and so left around 3 p.m. to drive back to the airport and fly back home. Since work was buying and every eatery in Hartsfield Airport was packed, I waited till I got back to Greensboro to get dinner at Kabab & Curry, a Nepalese restaurant that I just love. Well, they've completed the new bypass around Greensboro and I ended up on it (I do much better at these sorts of things in the daylight, as I haven't actually seen the new highway configuration to know where I needed to go to be where I needed to be) and so had to turn around to go back to High Point Road. I was absolutely starving, so I decided to go ahead and dig into the appetizer, vegetable samosa, which comes with a dipping sauce. I put the dipping sauce in the van's cupholder and proceeded on my way home. As I got close to the house I called Jimmy to ask him to put the dogs up if they were out so I wouldn't have to fight to get through the gate. When I hung up the phone, I stuck it where I normally do: you guessed it, the cupholder, which was already occupied by a cup of dipping sauce. I soon learned that sitting for a few minutes in a Nepalese dipping sauce is death to a cell phone.
But there is good news. Because I've been with Verizon for two years, I was due a new free phone anyway. I just had to take time out of my day to go to the Verizon store and get it. And of course whatever dipping sauce does to phones apparently makes it impossible to retrieve data off the phone to put on the new phone, so I had to retype in all my contact numbers. Bleh.
Yesterday evening shortly after 6 I went out to feed Maia her supper. I looked over in the lambing pen and saw, well, a lamb. When I got closer, I could see that number 84, who is named Oprah, had twins, a ram and a ewe. The ram lamb already has horn buds (the sire was the horned ram that came with this flock and has been gracing Lark's food bowl in ground form for these many months...). There's another ewe who looks like she might go soon, and she'll probably do so over the weekend while I'm gone to Roy Johnson's cattle trial. So Jimmy will have to be point man on lambing for the weekend.
A Cattle Trial
Yep, I haven't been to a cattle trial in a couple of years, mainly because I have no cattle to work on a regular basis, so it just didn't really make sense. But I did have a chance to try Lark, Pip, and Phoebe on Laura's BF's calves once about a month or so ago, and they looked pretty good. Unfortunately this trial is run on the full open trial field course, so it's really above Pip and Phoebe's abilities at the moment. It's probably pushing Lark to the limits of what she can do too, but I just decided what the heck. Cattle trials are a little more forgiving in some ways (no real emphasis on lines as long as you make the obstacles), so I figure that even if Lark takes a wrong flank now and again, there's not likely to be great harm. And since she seems to like working cattle, why not?
And Pip may get a chance by default, though he's nowhere near ready to do that much driving. Twist has been coming up lame intermittently on her left hind. I'm praying it's not a cruciate issue. If she shows any lameness at this trial, then I'll just throw Pip in instead. Who knows? He might actually surprise me and make it all the way around the course!
Since Laura and Chuck plan to be there, I'll see if I can't get someone to take photos and/or video.