A Taste of Life at Windrush Alpacas

April 28, 2008

A New Life in an Old Market Town

Filed under: alpaca, Alpaca Care, Alpacas, Family, General — Tags: , , , , , , — alpacalady @ 7:28 am


My mother’s move has been completed and she is busy unpacking boxes and settling in to her new apartment in the historic market town of Baldock, Hertfordshire.


Baldock High Street is a picturesque place with a variety of old buildings, wide streets and trees.  There is still a market held here every week, although we have yet to make it out to the market.  Being on an old coaching route several of the old buildings have arches through which horse drawn coaches could have passed.  The town has a lot of character and history, there is a presentation on the history of Baldock at the local community center in May, but I will have returned to the US by then and so will miss it, maybe I can catch it another time.


So far we have been impressed with the friendliness of the people we have met, people on the streets smile and say hello, those we have met in the shops have been helpful in finding us all that we need and the people we have met at the nearby dog park have all been ready to welcome a new dog owner into the area and tell us about the dog walks close by.


Peanut, my mother’s dog (we call her a jacksund as she is a cross between a jack russell terrier and a dachshund) has settled in well to apartment life and is enjoying her trips to the dog park, her little legs galloping and her tail held straight up in a salute to the new scents she encounters on the way.  She is still a little prone to barking at other residents of the apartments when she sees them, which gives them a bit of a start as she has a loud bark for a small dog.  Gradually Peanut is learning though that she has to share her territory with others and over time I am sure the barking will subside.


Not far from the apartments is a school for preschool and elementary age children, it was interesting to me to see the children out playing in the rain the other day, for in the US they would have been kept inside if the weather was inclement.  Here in the UK where rain is a way of life the children were quite happy to be out in the rain, playing with their coats on without a care about getting wet.


At home Ric is starting to sound a tired, between caring for the alpacas and his substitute teaching his work plate is a little full!  This weekend he will be helping Bob and Regina Dart of Llano Soleado Alpacas as they shear some of their herd, and the rest of the time he will be preparing our shearing area so that we can start shearing when I return home.


According to Ric the pregnant girls are looking as late term pregnant dams should, waddling around the pasture and taking it easy.   Not long now and the new crias will be making their appearance.


On Saturday I helped my friend Linda with her book signing.  Having written and published her autobiography Linda is now in the process of promoting her book and I spent Saturday with her at a book signing at a Waterstones bookstore in Berkhamstead, Hertfordshire.  The book signing went really well and she sold several more copies of her book.


Sunday was set aside for Linda and me to walk a beautiful walk around Tring Reservoir.  Linda’s brother Martin joined us and we enjoyed our time together walking in the countryside and looking at the birds, ducks, geese and swans.  Halfway through our walk we stopped at a local tearoom for breakfast, and were fortunate to be there under shelter when the heavens opened and the rain fell.  By the time we had finished breakfast the rain stopped and we went on to the second half of our walk – perfect timing!  

It’s a great time of the year for walking, as the trees are a brilliant green from their new spring growth and many are starting to blossom. 


Today my friend Val will be joining Linda and myself for a trip to Windsor to see Windsor Castle and we will have an easy day enjoying the town and the local dining.  The three of us usually arrange a spa day together when I am over, but with my mother’s move it was difficult to arrange a set date and so we have opted instead to go to Windsor which is a place I have only ever driven through, so it will be great to stop there and see all the sights.


On Wednesday I will finally get to see Laura and her new baby Aida who has already grown three inches and now weighs 10 lbs.  At that rate she will soon outgrow the clothes I have brought her.  Laura seems to be enjoying her first experience of motherhood but says that it now takes her two hours to get ready to go anywhere and both she and Ren are ready for bed by 9:30 pm.  The joys of parenting!


It is hard to believe that I am nearly at the end of my trip here, the time has gone really quickly as there has been so much to do.  My brother Chris has now returned to Italy and we both find it hard to believe that we managed to get as much done as we did.  It was great to spend some time with Chris, but hopefully next time we spend time together it will be doing something more leisurely!  My mother’s move was an enormous task, but we got it done and have told my other brother John, that should my mother decide to move again it will be his turn to organize things!



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