Tuesday, February 8, 2011

farms, new house, google docs

haven't had a post in a long time! these past few weeks, i moved houses and went on two 5-day farm placements (to a free-range egg farm & a dairy farm).

at the egg place, all i had to do was SORT EGGS. sure it's fun, and we were speed-sorting by the end of it, but because the farmer (this old man who still uses dial-up internet) had so many of his family members coming in to help everyday, the days became really lazy. this is how it went: (how do i remember it all so clearly -besides it being not a very uneventful day- ? it's because we had to keep a diary during our stay).
8am ate breakfast: freshly baked bread, made overnight in the bread maker, toasted & buttered, with poached (fresh!) egg with the yolks still half soft ;9 and cracked pepper & salt. oh, and also: porridge with milk & brown sugar.
- we felt so bad during our stay there, because the guy kept cooking for us! he was a good cook though, and i guess he's used to making meals because they regularly have backpackers ("woofers") who stay there and help out at the farm for free meals & accommodation (more on this backpacker situation / cleanliness later), but once for dinner he gave us so much that i actually felt like vomiting.. but i felt even more sorry for my jewish friend who was there, who had to eat so many pig products (everyday!) out of politeness. thank goodness her digestive system didn't complain..
-back to the day!
8.30am changed water bottles and refilled pellets ("rodent nuts" haha) for the rats and mice that were bred there - for the pet shop and also for reptile food - there's a reptile park nearby. they were all so cute!! the first time we looked around, we became idiots who squealed talked in baby voices and had no eyes from going *awwwwwwwwww T__T* and they had so many different coat patterns! and there were lots of babies!! yes.
9-11am sorted eggs that came out on a conveyor belt that travelled from inside the shed under the nesting boxes. we sorted them into good, cracked/small (to be cleaned-crushed-pasteurised-used in egg products eg. cake mix etc), and extra large. did you know that chickens like to eat their own eggs? it's a bit weird.
11ish morning tea! more fresh bread with spreads. lots of tea and vegemite consumed (water and not-vegemite for me).
11.30am more egg sorting!
12.30pm finished. yes. only a five hour day with eating in the middle. and it's only just after noon!
so the rest of the day, was spent being very bored. lots of napping. it became a daily ritual. we also walked around and took some photos, and we helped picked zucchinis on a few days (they are very hairy! and prickly!) my friend got a rash each time lol.
so. on to the hygiene situation. there wasn't a lot of it.. i don't know when he gave up on it, but everything was dusty and surrounded by spider webs. we found out during one chat that a researcher guy visits and collects a few hundred house spiders every so often, though the spider collection was already there beforehand... i don't think he was trying to justify the amount of spiders there though... maybe it was an interesting fact -_-?
and there were 4 layers of sheets on the bed, and when i tried sleeping on the 3rd most top on (my reasoning being, the first one was dirty, the second one can be my blanket, and the third can be what i slept on), it was DUSTY T__T. and the one night that i didn't put insect repellant on my FEET... i got about 7 bed bug-bites on one foot T__T it was insanely itchy, so much so that i had to make face scowling & imaginary-afro-scratching actions to express how itchy they were... aaarrrgghh T__T
but all in all, we were pretty spoiled there... having meals cooked for us, and not having anything to do after 12.30.. and we also had a new definition for "country clean~!" (spoken in a sing-song tone). it was just rinsing dirty dishes, attempting to use dishwashing liquid on a 2cm torn square of wiry sponge, and going "....that's clean enough.... COUNTRY CLEAN :D...!" and putting it on the drying rack.
trivia: there was also the original (circa whenever it was first created) "old spice" in the bathroom.

gosh that was long.

overview of the dairy placement cos i can't be bothered to type more, and i have to shower soon.
5-8am milked cows + gave vaccinated/oral drenches (intestinal worm medication) to some
3-5pm milked cows again.
nap, tv, played with cats/dogs on the property, took photos of calves in between.
also, the person there kept on asking if we "visited the river yet?" everyday, which we didn't. because it was a 1.5km walk :) and it was hot. and we weren't really given any directions. i think he was disappointed that we were so content with just lounging all day hehe.

the house change has been good - i finally have my own bedroom (can you believe it? the first time EVER 0_o), except for the anti-social Biscotti (she really doesn't like being around lots of people/noise, even in the old house): during the night, when it's dark outside and the house is quieter, with fewer people walking/talking/making noise, she's more normal - walking around with her tail up (ie. actually roaming the house & not hiding/sleeping under the sofa or walking with her body and tail low to the ground) and talks more. cos she used to be an outdoor cat, and would go around the neighbourhood during the day, i don't actually know how much sleeping during the day is normal for her.. i guess cats are supposed to sleep a lot. but still, she doesn't come out often enough to eat/drink/use the toilet. so at night when she does, she drinks A LOT of water (until half the bowl is empty) and then pees a lot too. she's not getting skinnier though, which is a good thing (since all she does is sleep all day!). though when she's under the sofa, she's breathing relaxed and sleeping - so not like she's stressed and alert (unlike the first day!). i wonder how long she'll take to get used to this. i just hope that she actually does one day, and not just be so uncomfortable her whole life from now on.. she probably misses the backyard and the big sky.
moving on from the sad update, i'm getting a haircut today, after more than one year!

anyway, do you know about google docs? you can use it to create paint-program style documents, word-like documents, powerpoint presentations, spreadsheets and forms! and something called "collection" which i don't know what it is. so you don't need to have those programs installed from microsoft! ohhhh!
here's a video from swissmiss that shows the powerpoint presentation feature.

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