The Goat Episode, in 3 Parts: part 1


Some of the funny in this lies in what I do. My day job is a unicorn. It is a mythical work from home position that doesn’t consist of answering penny surveys. I teach Chiropractors (mostly) how to use their (kick ass) software. I remotely connect to their offices, take over a computer there and teach them how to navigate and customize their software.

I sound like this:

The competent, efficient professional

But I look more like this:

Minus the curlers, plus a headset.

This past summer, I thought it would be a fine idea to move my office into the glassed-in porch. Logistics of working in a greenhouse aside, it was lovely – windows open, fresh breeze and plenty of sun.

Because of the morning glare on the computer screen, I started the days with the blinds drawn.

Professionally chatting away with an office full of doctors, I suddenly heard what I thought was a child crying.

No concerns, our distant neighbors have kids, and sound travels well here.

But I kept hearing it, and it began to sound closer. Right outside my window.

Though we are rural, we are also very close to the road, where pulp trucks fly well above the posted speed limit.

The proximity of the sound made me fear that a toddler had wandered off and was at risk of being struck.

I put the doctors on hold and snapped open the blinds to look at. . .

. . .a goat?

And not just any goat. A gigantic goat. The biggest goat I’ve ever seen. And this picture was snapped later. When I opened the blind, he was right up against the window, chewing on the lily buds.

Really, what can you do when unexpectedly coming face to face with a goat, other than laugh hysterically? So that is what I did.

Which then put me in the relatively awkward position of explaining to the docs on hold why I was laughing like a loon when I came back on the line.  I fear their image of me shifted then. They were in Chicago. And they assumed I was in San Diego, where the majority of the Chirotouch employees work. A goat, is probably the last thing they expected to hear.

Still giggling a bit, I continued my demonstration and the goat wandered off.

Ten minutes later, he was back, prompting a new round of giggles. When he stepped up again to the window to peer inside, I had to draw the blind.

Once more he wandered off. And again, he returned about 10 minutes later to bleat outside my window.

This pattern continued for three hours as the goat made circuit after leisurely circuit around my house, pausing each time to bleat, or chew on the lilies outside my window.

Finally I had a break, so I went outside thinking to catch hold of the rope around his neck and tying him to he tree in our front yard to keep him from wandering into the road and being struck.

I stepped outside to find him placidly nibbling on the bushes at the end of the ramp, a hank of rope dangling from around his neck.

I spoke to him gently; I know better than to march up to a farm animal assuming there are all going to be cute and cuddly.

This was a wise approach.

Because he went from this:

You have yummy things in your dooryard. I like it here.

To this:

You dare defile me feeding ground? I shall ram you into oblivion!

The giant white flurry charged me, driving me to scramble back up onto the porch. The door slammed shut in his face, and he just stood there, peering in.

After a moment, he trotted back down the ramp and around to the other side of the porch to look in at me from the door on the other end.

But the clover growing nearby caught his attention and he dipped his head and then. . .

disappeared.

What? Where did he go?

Then, from below my feet came a scuffling, knocking sound. . .

Oh, my God, the goat is army crawling under the porch!

Goats can crawl?

Yes. Yes they can. All the way under my 14 foot long porch to come back out the other side to charge back up the ramp to ram the door.

I gave up. I went inside and called up to my husband who had been ensconced in the outside proof living room all morning, playing with out son, and who had recently gone up for a nap.

“Dan. Dan! There’s a goat out here. Can you come give me a hand?”

First, you have to know Dan is from New York. The city. The first time he heard a cow low I though he was going to have a coronary.

Second, he doesn’t get too excited by much. He’s about as laid back as you can get without slipping into a coma.

Third, he sleeps like he is in a coma. You can have an entire conversation with him without him actually being awake.

He sat up and blinked. “What?”

“There’s a goat. Walking around and around out house. Can you come help me catch it?”

“Can I help you catch a goat?”

“Yes.”

“No. It’s a goat. He’ll wander off. I’m not playing Old MacDonald right now.”

A look at the clock told me I didn’t have time to wake him up and more, or go on a goat chase anyway, so I went back to the sun-porch to work.

Before I dialed out, I dashed off a quick email, to a friend and the two people above me at the company I work with:

“I, for some bizarre reason, have a gigantic and very aggressive white goat walking around and around my house…about 5-10 minutes between each trip by my window.  It is bleating constantly. Do you have any idea how freaking DISTRACTING that is while I’m trying to talk about the ledger?

“I tried to go out and see who it belonged to, but the sonofabitch CHARGED me!!

“Once it has stopped and just looked in my window, and twice it has stepped up onto my steps to peer in the porch door.

“You’re welcome.”

My friend thought it was hysterical. The guys in San Diego? Didn’t believe me.

They wanted proof – I was asked to get a picture.

And that is why the second leg of the story unfolded.

But I was due on a call. So for the next hour and a half, I put on my professional voice and worked with doctors, all the while waiting for the bleating of the goat to come back around. Every ten minutes.

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7 thoughts on “The Goat Episode, in 3 Parts: part 1

    • This actually happened last summer…I meant to write about it then, but didn’t. But I was just in San Diego with the folks who asked for the picture proof – they’re still trying to figure out if I made the whole thing up. Because it gets more bizarre and the whole episode was stretched out over 14 hours!!!

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