Monday, November 3, 2008

Alpaca Show

I showed Harley, my 2-yr-old alpaca on Friday. It was my first time in any show ring and his first time being shown. He didn't plant all four feet and refuse to move like I was afraid he would...well, he did once, but the judge shooshed him along. What he did do, however, was fidget like a whirling dervish the whole time. The judge commented that he had a lovely handle but his confirmation wasn't so strong. I don't have a clue how he could tell that because Harley didn't stand still long enough for him to notice confirmation. We came in third in a class of three but look who we were competing against:

The first is a rose grey, who looks like he should be in the brown class, don't you think? Actually underneath that lovely brown colour is an even lovelier grey colour--a very sought-after combination. And the second is a white with a slight fawn spot on his shoulder. How can they judge Harley against these opposite colours? I think they should have had their own categories. It would be nice to see how Harley does against a group of actual fancy greys. Perhaps next time...

The big news of the day was that Doug was Shanghai'd into showing one of Carolyne's boys, and he and the boy, Canon, took first place! Carolyne and her boy took second. All of Carolyne's animals placed, so she was pleased.

The show ran for two days. Friday night they had the banquet and auction sale. We stayed for both and had a great time. I had fallen in love with an alpaca mom and baby that were for sale but they went for almost $8000.00. My pockets just aren't that deep. The baby was black with white socks and little black feet. Adorable!

This baby's mom was showing some signs of distress, but it didn't stop her from being sold for quite a sum. It was my first auction, and the auctioneer and his men were interesting to listen to and watch. I don't know how he doesn't just spit his tongue right out when the bids are flying out of his mouth so fast. What a talent.

A few animals were pulled from the sale because they didn't raise enough bids. Apparently the alpaca market was not safe from the unstable financial markets of late. One of these pulled animals was Kalamara, who is a bay black with her two front feet having socks and black shoes like the baby pictured above. We've been looking for a dark coloured girl to breed with Harley. We both fell in love with her and on Saturday we bought her. She's pregnant and due at the end of July next year. SO exciting! She was bred to Tucker, a lovely fawn male who has super dense and fine fleece. Combined with her fine fleece, the cria should be stunning. And because his lines were full of greys and colours, who knows what colour the baby will be?

I bought some yarn while I was there.
The solid beige is for the Cookie A workshop I'm in at the knitting retreat, and the dyed skein was just so gorgeous I had to take it home. It was hand dyed by Alice. (Can't think of her last name or alpaca farm name, but she sure knows how to dye. I have her card somewhere but right now it eludes me.) These are both 60% alpaca, 20% merino, and 20% nylon. Should make lovely, sturdy socks.

Doug and I met many wonderful new friends at the show, and we look forward to the next alpaca show where we can see them all again.

Now that the show is over, and Kalamara is settled in her new home at Saumer Time Alpaca Ranch where Harley lives, I can move my focus to the knitting retreat I'm leaving for on Thursday. I haven't had a second to get excited yet, so I think I'll take a moment right now and do that...........................................................................................Ok. Now I'm stoked!

Wow, I have so much to do: packing, deciding on what materials to bring, shopping for new jammies and yoga pants, deciding what knitting I should take with me, etc., etc., etc. Stay tuned for retreat details and pictures next week.

As per usual, click all pictures to enbiggen!

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