Saturday, January 16, 2010

How cows are treated like dogs and pigs sleep with kids

I have to update you guys on two trips that we did this week.
Last weekend Jack asked me if I was interested in visiting the Pennsylvania Farm Show. More or less expecting I wouldn't be. And that might have been the case, if he hadn't mentioned there would be thousands of animals there. That always gets my attention.
We did ask my son if he wanted to go, but hey, what interest does a 15 year old have in cows, tractors and other farming stuff? Maybe when it is a game on the pc, Wii or whatever these things are called.

This meant we were free to go during the week. So Jack took monday off from work and we decided to go a bit early.
It was huge, halls filled with machines, food, exhibitions that showed the winners of the quilting, baking, photography, flower arranging competitions. Cooking demonstrations and, what I loved, presentations of nature preserve organizations. That last one had several birds of prey they showed and gave info about.
You do have to look very closely though, some of these nature lovers tend to show their love by killing all kinds of animals with a gun. Hunting is big over here but not my cup of tea.

Anyway, we went for the farm animals. There were several arena's in which animals were showed.

And what do you know, the pigs were the biggest attraction that day.
Unfortunately we missed the horses, but we got to see cows, tons of cows.
The first ones we saw were Angus cows and believe me, compared to the Dutch cows, these look exotic.
Beautiful black fur, thick and soft .
How they got it that way was something we saw later. LOL, those farmers are almost as bad as the poodle owners on a dog show.

To fluff them up, you use high pressured air. And from what I saw, the cows love that part. And they get brushed, brushed and brushed again. Take it from me, these farmers don't leave home with out a full hairdressers equipment. Comb, scissors and razors are used to give the animal the exact right angle on the butt hair or keep the edged straight at the ears.

They don't need that much stuff with the pigs, all need are brushes to keep them clean and some glittery spay to keep them shiny. I think it was the first time I saw a golden brown, red pig. But most of the others were really pink.

We spent hours and hours there, it was fun.
The animals looked like they were treated really well. Off course, most are bred to eventually be eaten.
But since I am still no vegetarian, who am I to say something about it?

The rest of the week was pretty slow, a few days back the temperatures went up, so I removed the Christmas decorations and most of the snow melted, kind of boring.
So when Jack suggested to do a trip to Waggoners Gap to check it out, I was all for it.

Every time we went to Carlisle I could see that ridge of mountains and it looks like there are some really high spots up there. Also it is a really well known spot for raptor watching.
The whole ridge is known as Kittatinny Ridge and forms a natural fly way for a lot of birds during migration.
Unfortunately, since it was the top of the mountain, there was too much snow  around to walk to the top.
But we will surely return, the views are beautiful from there and we might even see a few big birds.

From there we drove on, through Perry Country. A beautiful area but also clearly poorer than where we live. But the area still has several covered bridges of which we found three on our trip.
We drove all the way to Tuscarora State Forrest but ran into the same problem as on Waggoners Gap.

Too much snow that made it impossible to get into the woods. But we will surely return there.

By now it was lunchtime, so we started looking for a place to have lunch. We found a little family restaurant that looked pretty busy and as we found out for good reason. They served some real good stuff there. We settled for a grilled sandwich with ham, sauerkraut and cheese. Yummie!

After this we were ready to drive a bit more and Jack wanted to check out a place in Bigglerville.
There is this warehouse that has a sign up that says they were in several magazines and is 100 years old.
I had my doubts, but this was fun. The place was old, crammed with all kinds of stuff from years and years ago and we were welcomed by a little old lady (she was at least 80) that wanted to know where we came from and kept telling us all kinds of stuff from her past.

This was the second time I was in a place like this and they are fun.
If you ever get the chance to go into a place that looks like it should belong to "malle pietje"  (this is for our Dutch readers) than go for it, you will have a great time remembering how your grandmother used to have similar stuff when you were young.
If you are ever in Bigglerville PA, it is worth an hour of your time. I mean, even president Eisenhower spent a happy hour at this country store.

Ohh, and before I forget, Jack and I both fell in love with these guys. Alpaca's.
So I have done a bit of reading, if we ever decide to move, we should have a few. They are so easy to keep, intelligent, gentle and social.
And you can drown in their eyes...

1 comment:

houndstooth said...

I love all those places off the beaten path! I'm glad you had fun!

I haven't been to the farm show in a long time!