Thursday, May 11, 2006
In which the Two Sock Knitters go to an alpaca festival
The Fool tasked me with making something up about the alpaca festival. Really, alpacas are sweet creatures who make noises like they're playing kazoos, and they have soulful eyes and lovely long eyelashes and they're herbivores. There are loads of them at the alpaca festival, and all the alpaca owners are friendly and happy to talk to just about anyone with a question about their animals.
I'd rather make stuff up.
Two weekends ago we went to an alpaca festival in Madison, Wis.
Frequent readers will know that I have also recently been to a gourd festival, at which people admire, fondle and otherwise mess with gourds.
Alpaca festivals are much the same, except most alpacas don't take kindly to fondling. Oh, also? Unlike sheep and wool festivals, no one serves you alpaca-kebobs. Because, really, who could eat one of these?
Well, we all ought to eat alpacas. They're deadly and if we don't eat them first ....
You will note the sharp canine teeth. That is because, in the wild, alpacas lie in shady crevasses, high in the Andean mountains, and pounce on small rodents that happen to pass within grasp of their steel jaws and sharp claws. I think some kinds of alpacas are venomous. Don't be misled by the fact this alpaca has beautiful soft fleece covering its eyes. Alpacas have small pits near their noses that allow them to sense their prey's body heat before striking. Wait. That's snakes. Nevermind.
There are two main kinds of alpacas. Huacaya alpacas are the fiercest and the fluffiest. They have a soft, woolly coat and come in several colors, ranging from white to dark brown. Most Huacaya alpacas are Methodists. They like to sing hymns and have terrific church potlucks.
Suri alpacas are predominately Rastafarian and are known for their distinctive silky coat, which some people think resembles dreadlocks. They play an infectiously rhythmic popular music. Many Suri alpacas are noted reggae bassists.
Our alpaca overlords were pleased that we brought them an offering of two small toddlers. Generally, they were much less frightening than the sheep we took the toddlers to see last September. The sheep made the kids cry. (We met some friends in Madison; these aren't some children we snatched off the street to appease our woolly masters or something.)
We shopped for fiber - naturally. The Fool got a wee baggie of alpaca fluff which he plans to spin someday. I fondled some yarn, but I've got enough to knit right now, so no alpaca yarn for me.