When my children where small they would beg me to tell them stories about when I was a child. Some of my stories have become staples in the family history repertoire. A couple of the favorites revolve around our goats. We only had two goats and only for a few years. We had a male and a female and they had tremendous personalities, yet I cannot recall their names (how sad is that?).
One memorable event with the goats happened one spring day:
In Hinckley, Morris Merc (Mercantile) (the local store with a little bit of a lot of stuff) sold kites... but only in the spring. Every kid wanted a kite and a few sticks of twine and it was a huge deal to see who could get their kites to fly the highest, thus using the most twine. For a couple of years I had purchased bad kites which I could hardly get off the ground. I had a great deal of sympathy for Charlie Brown during that time. But when I was 9, I had a killer kite! It was bright yellow and had a red Chinese Dragon on it. It was so cool! That was another thing about buying kites at the Merc is you really didn't know what your kite would look like because it came all rolled up around the balsa wood sticks and wrapped in paper. Boy, oh boy, was I excited when I opened this one and found such a cool-looking kite.
Shortly after my purchase, I went out in our pasture with my newly assembled my kite. My Mom had done a great job of adding a tail made of scraps of fabric. There was a nice, stiff breeze blowing (which is nothing new in Hinckley where the wind blows 350 days a year) and before long I had to fasten one end of a ball of twine to a second and then it was nearly gone too. That kite was so high, I could hardly see it! Kite flying is actually quite difficult work and after awhile I was tired so I started rolling up the twine and bringing that kite in. This was a dandy specimin and I was going to show it to all my friends and tell them how high in the sky it had been!
Down, down, down came my kite growing brighter and larger by the minute. Suddenly a gust of wind grabbed it and slammed it to the ground off in the distance, so I started walking and winding towards where it fell. We lived on a farm and on a fairly big lot so I couldn't see where it was, but I just kept walking and winding knowing I would get to it eventually.
I walked past the chicken coops, rolling and rolling. I walked past the pig pen, winding and winding. I thought it must be out in the tall horse grass. I saw the twine was stretched over the top of the goat pen so I stepped up on the bottom rail of the fence to continue winding. But horror of horrors...as I looked over the top rail of the pen I saw the two goats munching on the very last bits of my beautiful kite. One had a little piece of yellow paper stuck to his beard and the other one had a few inches of balsa wood sticking out of her mouth as she chewed. Nothing else was left but the twine hanging loosely over the rail.
I don't remember if I screamed and threw a fit (I probably did); but the mental picture of that kite being chewed up by goats is seared in my memory forever.
About a year after the kite incident those goats escaped from their pen and in my attempt to heard them back in, one of them knocked me down and gave me a concussion. For some reason, I have very few memories of the goats after that.