Napoleon the Sheep

We seem to have acquired, as Monty Python once put it, ‘that most dangerous of creatures, a clever sheep’. Presumably the one who organised the ‘King of the Castle’ game on the roof of their lovely straw igloo which caused them to go through it, and reduce the thing to a battered-looking haystack. We drove up to the house about sixish last night, only to find a huddle of guilty, scurrying lambs in the immediate vicinity of the vegetable garden. Fortunately, since they were bottle-fed, the beasts are relatively friendly: they are also exceedingly partial to their sheep-muesli, so I simply went and got a saucepan and filled it with their supplementary nosh and shook it invitingly: the result, a procession of delinquent little woollies all trying to get their noses into the saucepan as I strolled along in the general direction of their paddock. But as is usual with sheep and suchlike, something else caught their attention; suddenly five of them scattered off, and I found I only had one. This one I boosted over the fence, and filled their trough. The sight of Sheep One happily gorging drew the others as if by magic, and all of a sudden, the whole flock was crowding urgently up to the barbed wire trying to get in. One by one, the Northern Professor picked them up (being half grown they are still fairly portable) and dropped them over the fence. All but one; who suddenly jinked off, ran round a different way, and squeezed through the wire: clearly the only one who remembered how they had got out. You might say it wasn’t too bright of him/her to do it while we were looking but it’s still fairly Napoleonic for a sheep.

Transmission was interrupted at this point by the spectacle of a flurry of white bodies racing across the garden: Napoleon the Sheep had organised another break-out, from a different point this time. With the willing but wholly inept assistance of Mark the Squaddie, with infinite effort, the little bleeders were successfully returned to Stalag Sheep. I propose a new Olympic sport; sheep hurling. You catch one by the wool as it bullets past and throw it as far as you can. The defences have been strengthened (again). We’ll probably be down to Travis Perkins for searchlights and perimeter alarms by the end of the week.

10 PM. The sheep escaped again, despite the fact that the entire front length of fence, the bit they’ve been working on, has been reinforced with pig wire. Napoleon (now identified; second biggest with a blotchy face and medium sized horns) was once more seen purposefully trying to press down a bit of wire to create an escape hole. Moreover, as we checked the perimeter, burdened with wire, staples, hammers, secateurs, etc., as we passed a section hastily defended yesterday by a vertical weaving of bailer twine, there was Napoleon, purposefully gnawing at the nylon string trying to get it off. There is a number of Spanish delicacies involving baby lamb. We are considering this option. Can anyone think of an excuse for a really big midsummer party? We feel that without their noble & intrepid leader, the troops will be all over the place. Vide Napoleonic Wars, passim.

6 Responses to “Napoleon the Sheep”

  1. The German Guests Says:

    Well, it did take them a while to figure out there was another hole, didn’t it?

  2. Janey Says:

    You underestimate Napoleon. It has not ben a question of figuring out an escape-route, but of making one. He has been patiently pushing down one of the wires in the fence with his forefoot until it slackened enough to let him squeeze through. I have caught him at it. But supplementary pig-wire wired to the outside of the main fence should, I hope, prevent him from continuing with this project. Can sheep tunnel? I think we might find out.

  3. paul Says:

    My guess is Napoleon has several exits noted and made a tactical error (not to expect too much from a sheep) by using the second one so soon. The taste of freedom must have been intoxicating . . .

  4. The other German Guest Says:

    Supplementary chicken wire will make Napoleon’s world image complete: Elba-like he will pace from one end of the Stalag to the other. I must say the sheep hurling idea sounds intruiging. There should be a league. And prizes. And fans.

  5. Janey Says:

    We had an art historian here for a couple of nights with a state of the art digital camera: I now possess a .jpg of the Northern Professor caught in the act of hurling a sheep. I don’t think this blog does pictures but it is available on individual application.

  6. paul Says:

    Oh, I think a picture would be fine, but we’ll only expect more, so be careful.

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