Yesterday was one of those occasions when visiting some alpacas just seemed like the right thing to do. My friend Tia and I made a trip out to Hood River and beyond to hang with the odd creatures. An effusive young woman tending the yarn shop beside the stable eventually drove us away with her perkiness, but not before we pet and fed the animals’ buck-toothed, puffy heads.

A few years ago, Tia and I had our first delicious taste of alpaca culture at the Expo Center where a convention was taking place. The event itself was somewhat surreal, but what preceded was pretty weird too.

Before heading out, we were having coffee on the back porch of a cafe when our friend Ady appeared alongside the fence carrying a 12 foot ladder. Our other friend Rob owned one of the condos next door to the cafe and Ady happened to be staying there while he was out of town. And she’d locked herself out. We rushed over and held the ladder as she climbed up in socked feet.

Once she was back outside and with shoes on, we invited her on our bike ride to the alpacas and she accepted. The synchronicity of this whole incident was even more significant because Ady was actually the original alpaca appreciator from years prior.

Then we pet some alpacas, watched a showing competition, looked at alpaca-based merchandise, talked to a lady nursing an abandoned baby squirrel with a syringe full of milk, ate some soul food and biked home. You know, the usual.


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