Monday, 9 April 2007

Goat farm

Today we did not go to Texel as we had originally planned. We had underestimated the amount of travel involved and, given how distressed Michael was yesterday with his teething pain, we decided to pick an outing closer to home. We decided to go to the goat farm in the Amsterdamse Bos.

We had previously attempted this outing a couple of years ago. We travelled there in the middle of winter when the ground was thick with slush and snow. The area around the farm was swarming with people and when we had to dig our car out of a slushy, muddy hole, we gave it up as a bad job and came home. Today we went ready for the crowds and were hopeful of a good day out because of the glorious weather.

WRONG! Yes, we went ready for the crowds but we didn't expect EVERYONE in The Netherlands to be visiting at the same time. The farm is of a reasonable size but it was ridiculously overcrowded. The central farm buildings housed pens for goats, chickens and pigs. There were a lot of goats and kids in small pens. They looked perfectly well cared for but it made me wince to see how little space they had. I seriously hope they are given some time to graze in the fields, although I doubt it as the farm is open to visitors from 10am to 5pm, 6 days a week. Apart from a chap selling goat milk ice-cream, I couldn't actually see any farmhands anywhere. Because of this, adults were actually vaulting the fences of the pens to get closer to the goats. They were taking their cameras (with flash) and their children with them. The poor goats had nowhere to escape to. The other depressing thing was the smell!! Phew!! I must have turned into a real townie because I couldn't help but wrinkle my nose.

We didn't stay for more than 20 minutes and then we headed off to Amsterdam to get some fish and chips instead.

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