Alys : Ranger, how are you doing?
A: Yes, I understand.
R: Yes, I am so-so.
A: Things are only going to get better.
R: What did you do with Rover? Did you butcher and eat him?
A: Hell no. He’s in the kitchen addition.
R: Why is he there?
A: Because he’s sick.
R: Why is he in the kitchen addition? How come he isn’t out here with me?
A:Because he’s lost a lot of weight. He doesn’t have the fat reserves needed to keep his energy level up in cold temperatures.
R: That happened to Peaches.
A: Yes it did.
R: You didn’t bring her into the kitchen addition.
A: No we didn’t.
R: How come you didn’t bring her into the kitchen addition?
A: I don’t know why we didn’t. We should have. I do have my regrets about this.
R: Well she was a great old goat.
A: And Rover is a great older goat.
R: So how is my buddy doing?
A: Up and down. He stands for a bit and then lies down. He seems quite comfortable.
R: I’d be comfortable too if I was in your nice warm barn.
A: Ranger, I feel bad for you, but it’s like this, Rover now needs the quietude and attention. And we don’t have the space in the kitchen addition for two goats.
R: How about putting me in the living room?
A: How do you know we have a living room?
R: Remember: Some time ago, Rover and I walked into the house behind you – Pete wasn’t around.
A: No, if he had been around, he would have been upset to find you both inside.
R: Why is that?
A: Because you both stink.
R: We smelled better when we were bucks.
A: That’s a matter of conjecture.
A: Never mind.
R: I’m cold out here. And so are Freebird and Sophie.
A: I’m aware you are all cold. But you are all very healthy, so you will survive this.
R: When is it going to get warm again?
A: In a few days, or so I have been told.
R: Then what?
A: Then it will get warm again.
R: And you’ll let Rover back outside?
R: What if he wants to stay inside?
A: Out he goes.
R: And we’ll get Mea when he’s better?
A: Yes, but right now I’m putting my energies into assisting Rover in getting better.
R: Good idea.
A: Ranger, I want you to envision it being spring again. Picture a warm day. You and Rover are both out in the yard, eating greens. Both of you are extremely happy.
R: I will do this.
A: I just want you to know something.
R: What’s that?
A: You are out here alone. But you are not forgotten. Not by a longshot. You are loved as much as Rover is. If you were sick, you’d be inside. But right now Rover is sick so he’s inside.
R: Yes, Rover my buddy and friend is sick.
A: Yes, Rover, our buddy and friend.
Next: 20. 1/20/17: Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Billy Goat