Since the temperatures hit 90 degrees plus for several days here on the farm, I spent a lot of time outside, making sure everyone had access to fresh, clean water, and, of course, crisp, delicious watermelon treats. Today I let Harvey and Melman out around six am for a hop around the yard, knowing it’s much cooler outside in the grass than it is in the Bunny Ranch. Later in the afternoon, I saw both of them relaxing underneath the tall Jerusalem artichokes in the garden. Leave it to Harvey to find the one weak spot in the deer fencing that’s just big enough to burrow under. Since they looked so relaxed and happy, and because they were sleeping rather than eating, I decided to let them be, thinking, “How much damage can two bunnies do?” Turns out, when you’re talking about fifty pounds of bunny, the answer is quite a lot. The biggest challenge, though, was getting the bunnies out of the garden. Since the main garden is about 1/4 acre big, I’m sure they thought they found Heaven, Nirvana, and Old Country Buffet, all rolled into one convenient location, and they sure as hell weren’t leaving it. I chased Harvey up and down the rows for about fifteen minutes, with me never coming close enough to grab him despite the fact that he would turn his head on the fly and rip off huge mouthfuls of whatever delicious garden plant we happened to be running by like some kind of bulimic brontosaurus. And even if I could catch up to him, he’s over the weight limit I’m supposed to pick up with either of my poor broken arms, the right one of which just got the stitches out this morning. Lucky for me, he got sick of being chased and ran back to the Bunny Ranch.
Melman presented a much bigger challenge. Forty-five minutes into the rabbit rodeo, I found myself yelling things like, “I can do this alllll night, mama’s retired now!” I finally caught him with the help of the same deer fencing that had started this whole escapade. I got close enough to startle him up into the air, and he bounced off the fencing and literally landed in my arms. Which was both a good thing and a bad thing, since he exceeds the safe weight limit as well. I wasn’t about to put him down, though, since by now I had stomped through all my beautiful plants like a garden Godzilla, with bean tendrils hanging off one leg and a section of chicken wire caught in my shirt. I got a bunch of scratches up and down my arm, but it was worth it when Melman joined Harvey in the Bunny Ranch. I mean, if you’re a deep sea fisherman, you’re not going to cut the line on the swordfish just because it gets a little stabby, right? Gene’s just gonna have to get up early tomorrow and fix the fence.
I never thought I would say this, but I think the pigs were actually my favorite part of dealing with the extreme heat this weekend. I figured they would like to cool off a little bit, so I started spraying them with the hose. They had the cutest reactions ever – the biggest pig, Satan, would spin around in a happy little circle while grunting, then race around the pen, only to return to frolicing in the spray. Princess would just stand there and let the spray hit her face, then amble off to rub up against the tree. They were so cute it almost made me want to keep them. Almost. For any of you locals out there, August 22nd is Bacon Day, so get your visits in now!