Yesterday we began the morning around 6:00 Am by taking all the “grand opening” signs to their predetermined areas at the end of the surrounding routes which would lead to the farm and the hospice gift shop. After that, I picked up some ice and last minute “forgot items”.....returning as quickly as possible to help get the rest of the preparations made for the arrival of the people. Our friends all showed up in good time and Isabelle took on the food area, while I went in and manned the checkout at the computer. Judy and Lynda helped Vick outside anywhere they were needed....with Lynda sticking close to Vick....constantly, as she had all last week long and all day yesterday. Judy was also helping Loraine with her testing and other friends drifted in and helped where needed. Bill and Loraine, our son and daughter from Long Island, helped tremendously... Loraine, by conducting the Psych tests, which... for every person taking her test, there was a $10.00 donation made to hospice, in the folk’s names... so with the thirty-three tests she did, that gave hospice a check for $330.00 alone. Bill was indispensible running errands and directing the parking of visitor’s cars. On top of what Loraine’s testing made hospice, we did an additional $795.00 in sales and donations within the hospice gift shop, so the day actually netted the hospice program around $1,125.20.
We will deposit the money in the account and then forward a written check to the Catskill regional office of the Community Hospice very soon. Hooray and thanks everybody! You’ve all helped us to supply needed operating funds to help assure that hospice clients receive the same quality care while maintaining their personal dignity that our regional hospice program has always strived to supply.
Below are a few pictures of the day’s festivities, with folks just mingling and enjoying the superb day.
Now for the excitement of the week...other than the grand opening... Saturday afternoon, while we were intent and rushing to finish things up for the opening, Vick’s Dad called me to the rear deck, where he had been sitting, sipping coffee and watching the animals most of the afternoon. He pointed to a Pekin duck on the pond and said that it was having trouble swimming and was sitting really low in the water, compared to the rest...which were swimming around him, but at a distance. I agreed that the duck in question did not look right, so I started out to get a closer look. At first, I didn’t see any problem, but it needed to use its wings to move toward the bank and as soon as it quit flapping, it drifted right back out away from the bank. I thought I would go pick up a long piece of wood at the barn to help pull it in to the shore, to see what the matter was with it. As soon as I started to pull the duck into the bank, I saw it! A big round shell....the size of a basketball...and I immediately knew a snapping turtle had hold of our ducks leg and foot. There was a tremendous amount of blood and I feared it was going to amputate the ducks leg if I didn’t get it off, so I took aim and cracked the turtle right in the middle of the shell with all my might, swinging the full length of the eight foot piece of treated wood. To my surprise, the turtle released the duck and it made a hasty retreat to shore and popped out of the water... but bleeding profusely. Vick and Lynda went to work with the duck to stop the bleeding, which took an hour or so to accomplish. I on the other hand, beat feet to the house and retrieved my 12 ga. Shotgun with #4 high brass shells and went back to the pond, knowing the turtle would have to surface for air sooner or later. There were other ducks in the water too, so I vigilantly watched until I saw his huge head pop up for air and I let him have it. He immediately ended up on the bottom, in three feet of water, just off the bank where I couldn’t reach it, so I grabbed the wooden stick again, but until I got back, it had rolled over and had disappeared within the green depths of the pond. Now I waited again, knowing that if it flipped over, it was recovering and would have to surface again. When it slinked up to the bank about ten minutes later... almost between my legs that was his final fatal mistake, because he will never grab another duck again!
042703Cluckin' "A" Critter Farm, LLC