This afternoon the fedex truck brought me a present from Ruddy the Cormo Sheep !! Her fleece arrived today, and I was ready and waiting. Most of the time, when an unprocessed intact fleece arrives at the door, it’s sensible to open it up outside.
Sheep live outdoors, you know, and also there are generally parts of some fleeces that really need to stay outdoors.
Except maybe this one. When shepherds and shearers and their friends shear their sheep, they “skirt” the fleece before they bundle it up. Skirting usually means that they pull off the worst of the gross parts.
You saw from the photo of Ruddy a few days ago that she is a coat-wearing sheep, but that only keeps part of her fleece clean. Well, it was obvious as soon as I unrolled the fleece onto an old sheet on my front lawn that Ruddy only shared the very most immaculate parts of her wool with me 🙂 It was so perfect that I could have sorted it in my kitchen.
So I sat on the grass and chose out a pound or so of the longest, most perfect locks. I really was only going to sort out a couple of ounces, and then put my lymphedema wrappings back on, and do the rest a little at a time over the next few weeks. But it was so nice outside, sitting in the grass, and Ruddy’s fleece is such amazingly fine quality that it really wasn’t work….. and besides, once all the big school-school kids on our street and the little kids and Monique the nurse and the neighbors and Chris the mailman and the guy who came to fix the furnace got involved, it’s not like I could just pack it up and put it away, you know?
One beautiful November afternoon, one perfect Cormo fleece, one tub of locks ready to scour and comb…. and there’s still five pounds of “playing outside with my wool” left for another day.