They have a petting zoo at the fair. Need I say more? They had bags of carrot slices for a dollar and ooh boy did those animals like their carrot slices. I become fast friends with a camel, a yak baby, a highland calf, an entire farms worth of goats, a couple of pigs, two of the softest baby alpaca I've ever seen and one confusing cow.
The petting zoo isn't like it was when I was a kid. When I was little I'm pretty sure you could actually go into the enclosure with the animals (mainly sheep and small goats, then). I can't say I blame them for putting up a fence inbetween the kids
and the animals, for the safety of both. And the animals know that people = yummy carrots so they come right up to the fence and stick their heads over or through the bars to nibble at whatever they can get their lips on. Wait, whats that? You s
ay that petting zoos are for kids? I'll never believe that. By the way, mom and I tried very hard to collect fiber from the yak (see me reaching for it?) but it was very firmly attached.
We also caught the end of a herding dog demonstration- the same one they have every year where the dog herds the ducks around the ring and through gates and over a bridge and all that, but its fun to watch and I never cease to be impressed by the intensity of the dogs.
At the very end of the night, as we were leaving the barn area, I met a cow. Do you have any idea how large cows really are? Some of them are Big. Seriously. Big. They were kind of scary because it was very clear to me that any one of them could have taken me out with a well aimed sneeze. But then there were some smaller cows too, and they were laying down so they seemed even smaller. And I think it was past their bedtime so they were kind of drowzy and this one looked to me like he wanted a head rub. I'm unclear whether this animal actually liked the head scratch I gave him or not. Its hard to tell with a cow. Either he was very lazily trying to get me to stop without having to stand up or move more than his head, or he liked it. Or maybe he wanted to eat me. It was a confusing experience for me. Clearly I need to learn more about cow likes and dislikes and how to read their moods. I suspect that they might be slightly different than dogs, though I have no proof.