I moved to a minuscule town of 333 people about a year and a half ago. When I moved here it had nothing except a post office, a bank, a hair salon and a paint shop. Over the last year the bank closed, the salon shut down and I hear they are closing the post office.
The reason I moved here is a long story and I don’t have time to explain right now but in short: I own my house free and clear and I’m only 25 miles from the city.
As you may or may not know; I #run and ride bike. When I moved here I instantly fell in love with the area. Though it is 25 miles from the city, it is 25 mile deep in the woods and hills surrounded by twisty tree covered lanes, lush fields and endless streams. You simply cannot find a more beautiful place to run or ride your bike in all of #Kentucky.
Me being ambitious as I am, I decided that everyone needed to ride their bikes here. Sure #Lexington has their Thoroughbred farms and plank fencing but #Sadieville has more! We have barbed wire and vines that suffocate trees. We have goat farms (with goats that constantly need rescuing) and possum (some alive) and deer! Once over a 6 mile stretch of road I spotted 18 white tailed deer.
So I decided to create my own #Bike Tour. After a year in the making the Sadie’hill’ Bike tour is set to go off this coming Saturday. Over the last couple of weeks my husband, Danny, and I have been out on our bikes marking the roads for the tour.
Last week we were marking the 37 mile route, me with a backpack on carrying 4 cans of spray paint and 5 different stencils. As we started out up a particularly steep climb a Red Tailed Hawk took a couple leaps from the grass toward us. His wing span was quite impressive, he captured our attention as we both came to a stop in awe of him.
We dismounted our bikes to get a better look. One of his wings dangled useless from his side. He stared at us, daring us to look away first. Then he hopped into the brush and hid.
Luckily for us we had spray paint. I took out my can of florescent orange paint and sprayed a big X on the grass where we saw him last with the intention to return with the car.
When we returned an hour later Danny set out into the woods to look for the hawk. I unloaded the cage and a towel, grabbed my single leather glove (I couldn’t find the other one to save my life…or my hand).
“I can’t find him.”
We looked everywhere. The amazing creature was young and his colors were designed to blend in with his surroundings, it would take some serious luck to find him at this point. We were just ready to give up our search.
Then I heard my husband.
“Hey. Babe. He’s right here.”
I told my Danny to “keep an eye on him but don’t move in yet”, then I grabbed the cage and the towel to bring them closer. When I returned we each went to opposite corners and slowly moved in on the confused, yet ever staring, creature.
“You are insane. I would never get anywhere close to that thing. Look at the way he’s staring at you. He wants to kill you.”
I move in on the hawk, he steps onto his limp wing and rolls onto his back, never taking his eyes off of me. I lay my towel over him, reach my hand under his back and use my gloved hand to pull his wings into his body. I cradle him in my hands like a football; he can’t weigh more than a couple pounds.
As I pull him closer to my body and start heading over to the cage my husband says the most romantic words I’ve heard in a long time.
“You are the coolest person I know.”
I don’t know what it is about that statement, it kind of makes me worry that he doesn’t know anyone. But that made my day. Normally rescuing an #animal is reward enough for me, but having my husband think I’m cool, well that’s just the shit.
End Note: Broadbent Wildlife Sanctuary came to my house the next day to pick up the Red Tailed Hawk. I was happy that the little guy made it through the night, that’s the biggest hurdle when it comes to a wild animal surviving trauma. The man got out of the vehicle and we instantly recognized each other. He was the man that came to pick up the baby possums I rescued just a couple months ago. I have since put Broadbent #Wildlife Sanctuary in my phone; it is really nice having a place that so readily responds to an animal in need.
You would think that going for a run is boring. But I disagree. Not only do I rescue turtle from certin death, I am often called upon to rescue goats. Seriously, I’ve rescued four this year.
My favorite road to run is dripping gorgeous. The trees reach high and touch in a dance high above my head. After a gentle turn I pass a field with a handful of goats.
Now I assure you, 8 inch square mesh is a perfectly wonderful choice for fencing. It works especially well for horses, unlike barbed wire which can cause nasty lacerations when they run into it.
But is isn’t the best choice for goats with horns. See, it doesn’t matter if you have them in a lush field over-run with alphalpha, they will always see the grass/flowers/vines/trees/weeds/cigarette butts on the other side, and it/they will always be greener. The goat will eventually put it’s head through the 8 inch square in the fence and its little tiny brain won’t let it figure out how to get it back out.
So, if you are running down a road (or biking) and you hear the cries of a dying woman coming from a section of fence along the side of the road, you should stop to help. Here’s how you do it.
Quietly walk up to the goat, talk to it (tell him about your childhood). Grab the horns firmly with your dominant hand and the bottom of the chin with your other hand. Pull the goat toward you, lifting up on the chin. As the goat fights and screams, wrestle the horns and head so they are tilted diagonally. Get the tips of the horns so they are both headed out the same square at the same time. Don’t let go until this happens. Once it does, the goat will pull himself out and be free.
Look into his eyes, see that look? It means “Thank You!” in goat language. If it’s a male, it probably means, ‘your hot and I would like to be the father of your kids’.