The Six Senses

The View from Green Bird Farm, Konstantinovo, Bulgaria

The View from Green Bird Farm, Konstantinovo, Bulgaria

I hear the soft clanking of the cow (sheep?) bells as the shepherds herd their flock down the neighboring hill. The sun’s rays dissipate through a weakening cloud. I can smell the after-sun cream Jan gave me on my nose and feel its icy power at work. The taste of my mint lip balm reminds me our earlier tea. And I feel the snuggly-scratchy warmth of my Fair Isle wool sweater as I rock myself in the hammock. Oscar keeps pushing his bally forward with his nose, then leans his muzzle down as he raises his light caramel eyes to me. Gail and Stel set the table as the rain patters on the roof and an owl hoo-hoos nearby. Dinner is ready. Another day at the farm closes.

Touch
Baby ostrich feathers look spiky, like a porcupine’s. But don’t be fooled. If you touch one, it feels like the stalk of a quill. If you pet the feathers together, it feels like petting soft grass. The down on their neck, however, feels just like that.

Spiky Soft

Spiky Soft

Taste
Wild rosemary has a bitter tang that its potato-worthy counterpart lacks.

Sight
Ostriches have long necks, so naturally they can become a bit tangled with their neighbors. Sometimes, this makes a heart shape.

Ostrich Heart...Awwww!

Ostrich Heart…Awwww!

Baby ostriches sleep together, curled up almost one atop the other. Cute cuddly critters!

Smell
Lucerne smells the sweetest when it’s ready to bail…something about the scent of freshly shorn grass arouses in me a lazy happiness. My eyes shut and I find it impossible to think of anything but that heady aroma.

Sound
Baby ostrich farts are unexpectedly cute. Picture a baby ostrich. Now imagine the face of a human baby after s/he farts. The sound is a bit like that.

When male ostriches are trying to be impressive, they make a sound like a motorcycle revving, or a male crocodile mating: BRM, BRM, BUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUURM. As they BRM, their throat bellows out like pelicans scooping fish into their beaks.Feathery Ostrich

A rather weird and unforgettable sound at the farm occurs when the ostriches copulate. The male sounds like the fowl* version of a person with no opposable thumbs grunting because he can’t squeeze the last of the ketchup out…in other words, pretty much the same as human males.

You’ve made it to the end! If you’re wondering why this post is entitled “The Six Senses”, you’ve paid attention. We use our five senses to absorb the world around us, but every person interprets that differently. My emotions and thoughts are here represented, and make up what I’m calling a sixth sense.

*Technically, ostriches are not fowl (or foul), but in this case, poultry. However, I like puns, even when they are….foul. For more information, visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fowl.

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