We went this last Sunday to Ardenwood farm for their annual sheep shearing. I've been planning this for a long time and took my camera with. I got zero sheep or sheep shearing shots-totally ridiculous I know. But I did get a couple of pictures of these:
Sheep shearer shoes! I asked the shearer if he was wearing some kind of felt shoe and he said, yes he was and that they were specifically for shearing. I'm not so sure he understood what I asked, possibly they are leather. Certainly, they have a specific purpose or history. So far, I've not discovered it, all I've found is this. If I can get a hold of my cousin-in-law in New Zealand who LIVES on a sheep farm then maybe I can get to the bottom of these.
From off of the shearer's truck: many bags full.
And a docent slowly spinning on a great wheel. I really wanted to try the great wheel until I could hear it painfully creaking and wobbling around. Maybe I'll wait for a larger wool festival. I don't think they were offering the viewers a turn at the wheels anyways but my fingers did itch just to see the great wheel. I've never tried it.
There are no pictures of the sheep themselves since there was a huge crowd around the barn before the shearing began and my kids were in no mood to sit there and stare at a bunch of nervous romneys and suffolks. We did go back and peek in the barn once the shearing was in progress and I saw one shorn sheep with a few cuts on her breathing in shallow, quick breaths. I don't know much of anything about sheep shearing or animal husbandry but I know a scared animal when I see one. I hope it was of a particularly nervous disposition and the other sheep didn't have any cuts and seemed fine walking around. Still, the crowd was enough to make me anxious as well.
I brought a pair of handcards and my turkish spindle in my bag on this outing. Don't ask me why, clearly it was insanity and these things did nothing but take up precious room in my bag but I felt safer knowing that they were there. Just in case.