The weather today was awful, starting out grey, drizzling by the time we left he house and gradually worsening to torrential rain by the time we drove home. The addition of a strong wind meant there was no warmth at all, and I suspect this is the reason the farm was quieter than it has been on previous Easter open days. It was still busy, but not heaving with bodies the way it was last time and there was plenty of room to park and the staff were not so stressed due to too many people on a small farm.
|Alpaca girls outside the studio.|
|M with a fallen branch from the monkey puzzle tree.|
We joined a large crowd braving the weather for a tour by one of the farm's owners, learning a fair bit about alpacas as we went. I'm not sure how much of the talk M listened to, but we trekked up and down steep hills, went into fields with alpacas and tried to avoid the poo!
|A herd of ladies.|
By now the weather was bad and we were cold, so it was time to retreat to the car to eat lunch. Not our favoured option, but we couldn't picnic outside so we made the best of the situation.
For M, the draw of Toft is the chance to walk an alpaca on a halter. Every time we go, she picks out the feistiest animal and off we go. After eating we made our way to the paddock where the farm sets up a small obstacle course to lead the alpacas around. M watched the previous group for a while before declaring she wanted the black alpaca.
For the avoidance of doubt, M informed the man in charge of her choice before we had made it through the gate.
|M and Dave with M's chosen alpaca.|
|This curious chap was watching us as we walked alpacas.|
|We posed, windswept and bedraggled, our alpaca reluctant to be with us.|
|M's poem, written from the view of the alpaca.|
I am feisty,
Though I am an alpaca,
But I am herd on a lead
And you will know but how to
Lead me on a lead for I am a alpaca. Alpaca. Alpaca.
M illustrated the poem and traced over my writing with a blue pencil, then showed the poem to the lady who took us on the farm tour. She was told it was very good, then skipped off to run around outside.
We finally headed home with a happy M, just as the rain started in earnest. Good timing on our part!
- Toft Alpaca Farm - http://www.thetoftalpacashop.co.uk/