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Rain from Hanna

Posted 9/6/2008 1:32am by Catskill Merino.
Hanna Part 1 
Saturday, 2 AM.  I'm up early—I couldn't sleep—it's too humid in the house; tropical rain has begun falling outside as Hanna spirals up the coast from the Carolinas where she made landfall.  According to the forecast rain will continue for 24 hrs. and we can expect winds with gusts as high as 48 mph this evening.  Rain is inconvenient but wind is scary.  Even with the market canopy tied-down to the truck, wind gusts can destroy it like a cheap umbrella bought on the street.

There have been few really bad Saturdays days so far this year, but this looks to be a zero-sum day. Rain won't hurt the wool as it dries out and unsold lamb comes back frozen; but vegetable growers lose sales and their harvest too—vegetables are perishable—when they're ripe and ready, you pick'em or lose'em, raindrops to come or not.
 
When I grew vegetables rainy market days were great for the sheep; they ate crates of lettuce and kale that I brought back to the farm.  They ate everything except the alliums (onions & leeks) and the nightshade fruits (tomatoes & peppers).  They loved leafy greens best, but they ate the soft summer squash too; and when all the easy eats were gone, they would eat the beets, turnips and other root crops which they wedged into the corner of the feeder and gnawed on, a feat for sheep who only have lower teeth.  
 
I hope I can take the day as it comes—take it as the sheep do—and do it one better by smiling back at the rain.