July 26, 2010

Well, it's definitely HOT out. Debbie and Ronnie have been spending their mornings in their South Habitat, which has a lot of trees and a pond. Usually between 10:00 a.m. and noon, they mosey down for a drink at the back of the barn before heading out to the shade of the big sycamore tree near the creek bed. This is one of Ronnie's favorite dusting spots. The "dust bowl" keeps getting bigger, as she yanks up clumps of grass around the edges to "wear" on her head.

Ronnie and Debbie
Ronnie and Debbie

Normally, as Ronnie is dusting - in the midst of her huge cloud - caregivers are bewildered as to what might be causing her to dust so enthusiastically when generally, no bugs are around. But that certainly isn't the case right now, as the June bugs are out in force. These giant beetles (about the size of green olives) like the tall grasses of the pasture.  When disturbed, they fly around wildly, bouncing off elephants and caregivers alike. These bugs, flying erratically, definitely get your attention when you're driving one of the four-wheelers!
Debbie met a new Sanctuary dog this week—a rescued greyhound named Mac who belongs to one of the caregivers. The dog was standing outside as Debbie was leaving the barn. She walked slowly but confidently closer to Mac. They stood facing each other, about ten feet apart for a few moments, as if to say, “Ok, ...what's it going to be?"  During those moments, the stand-off seemed to last forever... until Debbie broke the silence with a loud exhale. In response, Mac did what any greyhound would do, he ran—REALLY FAST—in the opposite direction!
The Girls are enjoying a variety of fresh produce from our garden as well as the Amish Auction. On this week's addendum to their regular menu was green beans, cucumbers, white field peas, crowder peas, blueberries, cantaloupe, and of course plenty of home grown tomatoes.
Every now and then, while getting ready to open gates to the larger African habitat and lead the Girls out to browse and explore, something can happen. Between putting the enticing hay on the four-wheeler and actually driving out into the habitat, there may be an interruption. You see something you meant to pick up, the phone rings, etc. Well, this week on one particular day, Flora & Tange were ready to go when the caregiver got a phone call and needed to go the other way first, and then return to the barn area. When he got back, Flora was resting her trunk along the top rail of the fence in a little shade spot napping and Tange was milling around picking at weeds and grasses. The Girls were completely crusted over with a fine coat of mud. They both kinda glanced at the caregiver to see if he was REALLY ready to go THIS time — such patient Girls!

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