You Can Call Me Al… paca

Busy day. Lots to throw in the dumpster… or so I thought.

I woke up to find the New Haven Register on the kitchen table, open to a small blurb about an open house in Killingworth. This was not your typical open house, because it was at an alpaca farm.

Actually, I started this trouble, because I pointed it out to Helaine a few days ago. She thinks alpacas are cute – they are. I just never thought she’d really want to go.

Alpacas aren’t normally kept in heavily populated areas. These were no exception. Killingworth is pretty countrified.

Both Google Maps and Rand McNally suggested a route that resembled two sides of a triangle. I looked closer and found something, through some back roads, that more resembled the missing piece… the shorter piece.

With less than total confidence, Helaine asked what time it was as we turned onto the first of the country roads.

My route worked and before long we were turning onto the driveway at the alpaca farm. Imagine a nice Connecticut Colonial on a few tree lined acres. Beyond the house were some small out buildings, stone walls and fenced corrals for the alpacas (would pens be a better characterization – I don’t know).

Alpacas are beautiful animals. From the same family as camels, they stand three feet tall to their ‘shoulders’ with long necks beyond that. As they chew, and they seem to be chewing nearly non-stop, their jaws swing from side-to-side.

All the ones I saw had pronounced overbites and were in desperate need of orthodontia.

I’m not sure how to describe their feet, except to say, I was forced to take photos of them. They were unusual to me.

We walked around from corral to corral. Often, the alpacas were teething on the metal cross beams that made the corral. Without fail, as we’d approach, the alpaca would retreat to the far side of its domain.

Without going into too much detail, alpacas might benefit from more fiber in their diets. ‘Nuff said.

They seemed non-confrontational – the Switzerland of wool bearing animals.

More than anything, what amazed me about the alpacas was the way they can sit on the ground. Imagine, not an animal, but a folding card table with legs. The alpacas mysteriously folded themselves to the ground – rear two legs first, then the front two.

Twenty minutes after we arrived, we were on our way home. We didn’t buy any alpaca mittens (adorable) nor alpaca wool (soft and very pretty). Given half the chance, we would have smuggled a few home in the trunk as pets.

I knew I should have taken the SUV.

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