Thank You for Your Wonderful Stories!
This is the story of Annabelle’s birth.
The last of the oak leaves were clinging tightly to the tree as the artic wind tore at their hold. The alpaca herd was venturing out into the pasture in search of a green blade of grass that by some miracle had not been eaten. Consuelo was moving slowly, her cria was getting large, and it was near her time to deliver her baby. The cria stirred within her.
Alpacas being from the mountains of Peru, Bolivia and Chile usually have their alpacas in the middle hours of the day. It is warmer during that time and the crias are wet when they are born, so the sunlight helps the crias to dry quicker.
Consuelo twitched her tail; she knew the baby was on its way. She searched for a place in the pasture where she could be alone, yet not too far from the herd.
The farmer and his wife had just arrived home. The farmer had been in the hospital. The farmer’s wife left the house and headed for the barn. The wind blew icy snowflakes in the face, she pulled her jacket zipper up to her chin and continued walking. On her way she surveyed the pasture. She was looking for Consuelo, as she did several times a day. She knew if Consuelo went off by herself that meant the cria was about to be born. There she was high in the pasture. She started to run to the barn. Quickly she moved through the tack room, grabbing a clean towel and her camera. Kit the farm hand followed her. They climbed the hill with the wind whipping at their ears. When they got close enough Consuelo looked up at them and moaned “hmmmmgh”. The cria’s head was already showing. The wind was so cold, the baby alpaca looked frozen. The farmer’s wife laid the towel on the crusty ground underneath the baby alpaca. The cria was wiggling its ears. It was alive but, oh, so very cold. Consuelo moaned again. Kit held the cria as the farmer’s wife checked its mouth. The baby alpaca’s tongue was blue. She called to her husband, who had stepped out of the house. He called back. “Help Consuelo, pull the baby out” Kit held the towel under the cria as the farmer’s wife gave a gentle pull. The wet cria slid out of Consuelo’s womb. Kit caught the baby alpaca and wrapped it in the towel.
The farmer’s wife stood up and called Consuelo to follow her. They walked slowly across the frozen pasture to the barn. Inside the barn they unwrapped the cria and allowed Consuelo to inspect her baby. “Consuelo, You have a beautiful baby girl, said the farmers wife. Kit and the farmer’s wife used clean towels to dry the baby off. They took Consuelo and the cria to a special pen in the barn that they had prepared earlier. It had a deep bed of fresh straw for the mother and cria to sleep on. Kit put a small pail of water in the pen and the farmer’s wife added a flake of sweet hay.
What will you call the new alpaca asked Kit? Her name will be Annabelle said the farmer’s wife.