Saturday, July 16, 2011

Definition of a "haggis"

The American Heritage Dictionary (not quite):


1) (Cookery) a Scottish dish made from sheep's or calf's offal, oatmeal, suet, and seasonings boiled in a skin made from the animal's stomach
[perhaps from haggen to hack1]

2) A type of dog, slightly mental, supposed to be a sheepdog, but would rather herd chickens. Needs a job, but doesn't really have one (because he won't herd sheep properly), follows master around slavishly, never takes his eyes off you, definitely a hack....

Haggis's particular claim to fame today: almost being trampled by his own herd of sheep.

He was wandering around in the driveway dozily around 5.15 am this morning (sheep feeding and sheep moving time), picking up those little black sheep kibbles he loves so much (don't think too hard about this or you may feel sick), when I turned the corner with all sixteen sheep at my heels.

Haggis was told to move out of the way because the sheep won't walk by a dog, but only moved maybe ten feet. The sheep began to balk and split up, so he was told again, only louder and meaner. He moved another ten feet, but at least finished up beyond the entrance to the pen I wanted to put them in. And went back to eating.

All the sheep but one went in. That one balked. Haggis was told to move again. He didn't.

This time he got the feed bucket thrown at him.

It didn't hit him, but at least he moved.

Too late though. Timing is everything in herding sheep, and they were quickly all out through the open gate and heading down the neighbors driveway on the way to the endless woods of Jackson, Maine.


Yes, but bobcats, coyotes and bears too.

Oh my.

Haggis at least came with me to get the sheep back, to undo the damage he'd caused. And the sheep, halfway down the track, decided they really didn't want to go hiking in the woods anyway, and turned around and came back and for one of those reasons known only to sheep, went right back into their proper pen.

Haggis is about eight or nine years old now. Mary perhaps a little bit older.

One of them will die soon.

And then I want a proper sheepdog, durn it!

One that herds sheep.

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