Tabatha Deans

Bringing Integrity to the Written Word

Llama Drama

When I moved to Denver, specifically the city, I wasn’t prepared for the amount of random wildlife that is found here. Bunnies are regularly seen darting across the streets, (although I seldom see cats roaming the neighborhood), the squirrels are so abundant I feel like I should be paying them rent. I often see fox, (or foxes?) hanging out in the fields along the train tracks, and there’s a general fear of coyotes eating small dogs and cats.
And then there are the Llamas. Three of them live in a field near the Centennial airport. Actually there are four in the field, but one always stays in the far corner, all by himself, isolated away from the others. We call him the “no drama llama.” The first time we pulled over to check out the llamas, they were on the far side of the field. When they saw us lined up at the fence, they came running eagerly, like they were excited to be fed and meet us. We grabbed handfuls of tall grass and held them out through the fence for the approaching animals. I’d heard that llamas were very smart, sociable animals, and they would actually hum if they like you. I hoped they would hum for us.
But their enthusiasm waned as they got closer. They stopped several feet short of us, the white one advancing slightly farther, while the other two stayed behind her. She tipped her head to look down her nose at us. She was adorable looking, with long eyelashes and a nose that she could wiggle at will. But she apparently didn’t like what she saw in us. It was about like meeting an adorable baby that you just want to squeeze and love, but it begins crying as soon as you get near it. I was disappointed. Animals usually love me, and they had seemed so excited in the beginning. Now they just stood and judged us. Deemed us not good enough to play with. I felt like a child on the playground shunned by all the other children.
We talked to them in soothing voices, tried to coerce them to eat out weeds, and finally said good bye and left. Determined not to be rejected again, the Good Doctor did some research into what might endear the llamas to us. Several days later we hit the grocery store and stocked up on apples, carrots and broccoli, all supposed “love” foods of llamas.
Again, they ran toward us from afar as we approached the fence, and I knew for sure they would hum for us today. They stopped short of the fence and gave us their judgmental looks, although it was obvious they were curious about the carrot the Good Doctor held in his extended hand. The white one, which I have decided is the leader, and probably the female, approached slowly and sniffed at the carrot. She twitched her lips and finally took the carrot, only to chomp it twice and spit it back on the ground in front of us. The broccoli she promptly disregarded. We threw bits of carrot and broccoli toward the other two, which they eventually began munching on, but I felt it wasn’t because they liked it, but more because it was something to do.
Then we brought out the apples. Sliced into quarters, the Good Doctor held one out for the white llama, and after sniffing and feigning disinterest, she finally took it from him. She lifted her head high, apparently to position the apple in her teeth so she could chew it better. She didn’t want us to know, but I was sure she was enjoying the apple. When she finished, she strained against the fence slightly in search of another piece from the Good Doctor. He obliged her, and for a few happy minutes we bonded with the llama. The other two stayed well behind her, but we tossed apple bits to them. They still didn’t act like they cared for us, but they didn’t spit on us, and I’m sure, almost sure, that I heard the fainted sound of humming coming from the smallest llama…

October 15, 2012 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , ,

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