Saturday 23 May 2015

Devon County Show (or, 'colour changes, a mobile 'phone call, and a missing ball'.

On thursday and friday, we got up at 4.45, and were on site by 7.00 as required - fortunately I discovered a jammed trailer brake on wednesday night, so sorted it out with some fine adjustment with a mallet. We are all lured to the show at 'ridiculous-o'clock', by the Full English Breakfast served in the show canteen, and it is worth it. The weather was fabulous, being quite hot between cloudy spells on both days. Several colour changes, from brown to fawn and fawn to light gave the stewards some headaches.

First, we had Apple Vale Florina in the Junior brown female class, and she was placed 3rd from five, quite satisfying.

Then we had Apple Vale Flamenco, and she managed a 3rd from four. I was in the junior fawn male class (Fiesta was unplaced), when a mobile 'phone rang, and I'm glad to say it wasn't mine (set to 'silent') - I wouldn't say whose it was, but if I can find Andy's phone number, I might ring it on friday at the Bath & West, to try and get the ice cream forfeit that is levied against such 'mis-demeanours'!
On friday, we had 'lights' and 'whites'. Apple Vale Fortune found himself in the first group in a split class, against formidable competition, and we were quite satisfied when he was put into fourth from his group of five,
Apple Vale Fortune enters the ring, watched by judge Mary-Jo Smith and apprentice Viv.
Steve Powell (Ashwood Alpacas) shows the 'bite' of Imperial Force for the judge to examine.
Mary-Jo examining the fleece.
The judge gives her oral reasoning behind the placings, while 1st and 2nd take a rest.
This morning, with a warm fine day forecast, we commenced our shearing, by Yours Truly, with Joy assisting, and we got three heavily fleeced, or pregnant females done - very satisfying, given the heat - I feared I might have lost my shearing 'mojo', but it was still there, no problems, no cuts, and quite tidy, if I say so myself - just the small matter of being knac***ed - when you have done it yourself you can really appreciate the professional shearers.

This week, I am helping erect two marquees for the Royal Bath and West Show on tuesday (heave ho), Joy will be demonstrating felting, compered by Val Fullerlove, on wednesday, and on friday and saturday I will be in the show ring again. Come and say, 'hello', if you read this - oh, the 'missing ball' quoted in the title of this blog refers to one poor breeder, whose male alpaca was elliminated due to the judge only being able to find one testicle - at three previous shows this year, the said testicle had made an if you have seen it.....


  1. You are all living very busy lives down there at present then - showing, shearing and felting. Great photos. Shirley & Robbie

  2. Congratulations on your results!
    I think I can guess whose phone that was!
    Shearing is very hard work - we have still a fair few to go!