Cuzco's Glamour Shot o' the Day
God speed our beloved Cuzco, the ambassador of fancy pants airplane ear packgoats. Nanno if you can find a strawberry will you give him one from me. Thanks for all the years of lovey Cuzco bedtime stories.
I'm going to have a lot of pictures and even some videos to post after this week. We're making the most of our time with Cuzco. Yesterday we brought him his very own order of cheesy bread knots swimming in garlic butter from the local pizza place. I have a great video of Cuzco actually jumping in excitement when Phil brought them out, then inhaling the knots, slurping up the pool of garlic butter, and smacking his greasy lips at the camera with a big cheesy grin on his face.

Tonight we had one of the best campfires ever. Cuzco hung out with us for the whole thing to the point where his legs began to buckle and he had to lean on me to stay upright. I told him he should lay down but he preferred to stand for some reason. For once in his life he was allowed to eat campfire food throughout the evening. He had two hot dog buns, three graham and crackers, a whole Hershey bar, and I even made him his very own s'more, cooked to perfection with melty chocolate and delicately toasted marshmallow. He LOVED it! I've never given him a s'more before. It stuck all over his lips so he was able to enjoy it long afterwards. We had a really good evening and I can't wait to share the photos when I get the time.
Those will be fun (and sad) pictures to see. Cant wait.

Speaking of goats eating candy... On my hike yesterday I spotted a golden egg sitting on a rock. There must have been an easter egg hunt in the redrock, which explains the inexplicable heavy traffic on my little road the other day. I opened the egg to find candy eggs inside. I gave one to each of the boys. I put the egg back down to take a photo of it and Bacchus totally ate it. He chewed on the plastic a while and I couldn't get him to spit it out until he finally decided it wasn't a good thing to eat after all. It ruined the idea of taking a photo of a golden egg in the sandstone. On the way back I saw this horrible glob of ? on woodstock's pack. I picked it up and looked at it. Was he barfing up a chunk of lung or something? No. One of those eggs was bubble gum and he'd chewed it!
Oh my gosh, that's hilarious! I'm glad he opted to spit the gum out instead of swallowing it. I'm sure it wouldn't hurt him, but I still wouldn't like the thought of them eating bubblegum. 

Last night's campfire really couldn't have been more perfect. It was warm enough for me to wear shorts but cool enough I wanted a jacket--exactly the temperature I like at a campfire. There was not a breath of wind all evening. Last night Phil started the fire before I brought Cuzco out. We didn't want another goat flambeau disaster. No "Cuzco Crisp" at this campfire, if you please! We brought him out after the paper was burned up but the new fire smoke was still rolling. He spent some time, as always, taking in the vapors.      

Although it was "Cuzco's" campfire, there was a limit to our hospitality. I brought the squirt gun so we could keep the old fella at bay whenever the cooler was open. Phil and I wanted at least SOME of the buns and graham crackers for ourselves. Besides, when Cuzco goes on a junk food frenzy, he doesn't exercise much caution. The line between comestibles and garbage is forgotten and Cuzco will inhale any box, bag, wrapper, or bottle that comes between his mouth and the goodies. Although Cuzco has always prided himself on his stomach of iron, I can't imagine such a smorgasbord would be good for his digestion. 

"No, you don't like hot dogs, Cuzco!" 

"Well, I don't know. I haven't tried this particular hot dog before!"

"Cuzco, get off my hot dog!" 

"Are you sure I don't like hot dogs? Just because I haven't like them for fifteen years doesn't mean I won't like them tonight!" 
Cuzco has always begged for a s'more, but he's never been allowed to taste more than a small piece of mine. A good s'more is too much work to feed to a goat! But last night was a special occasion and Cuzco isn't just any goat. For the first time in his life, I made him a s'more for his very own. It was ooey-gooey with melty chocolate and a perfectly toasted marshmallow that was crisped on the outside and liquid in the middle. Cuzco put the finishing touches on it himself. Like any over-excited kid getting his first s'more, he immediately dropped it into the ashes. He dove toward the campfire to retrieve it but Phil held him back while I fished it out for him. I picked out a few embers and sticks but Cuzco snatched it out of my hands before I could quite finish de-ashing it. Oh well, charcoal is standard seasoning at any campfire and it's good for the digestion. Cuzco swallowed the thing whole and a big gooey gob of marshmallow dripped down the side of his chin. He spend the rest of the evening trying only somewhat successfully to lick it off.   

He also got to hear some fiddle tunes.  

Toward the end he stood braced against my chair for balance. I tried to convince him to lay down because his knees were buckling and his hind end was swaying, but he preferred to lean on me instead. I liked having his sticky, knobby old head in my lap anyway. It was a good campfire.  
What a perfect night for Cuzco's campfire! I'll bet he would have become an omnivore if you'd given him the opportunity to eat a hot dog!
Goatberries Happen!
Lovely pics Nanno - looks like you had a memorable evening and Cusco enjoyed your special treats!
Happiness is a baby goat snoring in your lap
Today we said goodbye to our old friend Cuzco. I gave him a final grooming, and we put the other goats away so Phil and I could take him for a last short walk with us all to himself as he's always preferred. He couldn't go far. He was so tired. He had a wonderful last day. He ate four powdered donuts and the remains of last night's popcorn full of butter and cheese dust. He got to lick the bowl clean. He ate many peanuts and animal crackers on our walk, and he finished up with almost an entire can of cheddar Pringles. He was a happy goat right up to the end. It was truly a sign when we came back from our walk that Cuzco stopped at his own graveside and waited there while Phil and I went on across the pasture and up to the house to retrieve a few things for his burial. I'm sure he knew, but he was ready and, true to form, he wasn't afraid. Cuzco cheated death so many times in his fifteen years that I guess by now he had nothing left to prove. He reminded me of "The Tale of Three Brothers" in the book Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows--"And then he greeted Death as an old friend, and went with him gladly, and, equals, they departed this life." 

Also true to form, he gave us a perfect Hollywood exit. Cuzco has never graced the Silver Screen, but if any goat deserved a star on the Walk of Fame, it's him. He lay down, leaned his face against mine, and when our vet gave him the injection he simply went to sleep. There was not a gasp or a groan, not a shudder or a flinch. I felt his last breath hit my cheek and then his head fell softly into my lap where he lay still while his heart gave it's final few beats. And I am reminded of yet another Harry Potter quote: "...death is like going to bed after a very, very long day." Cuzco set his affairs in order when he passed the leadership baton to Finn, and there was nothing left for him to do. 

I left his collar and ID tag on him. I figured that way when he got to Heaven they'd know he belongs to us and won't send him the other direction for being ornery and growling at Saint Peter. Even if he has to stay in "unclaimed baggage" for a while, at least they know we'll pick him up eventually. I also left him with the remainders of the can of Pringles so he can snack along the way. Yeah, I know it's all very silly, but it felt better than hauling that stuff back to the house with me and then having to look at it. Cuzco had sneezed in the Pringles can anyway so they were all his.

Cuzco is laid to rest under our totem pole. His baby portrait is carved at the top. When we look out the window or come up our driveway we'll see his marker and be reminded of all the wonderful, happy times we had together. I'll never forget my "Cuzco the One-Horned Wonder Goat". He'll always be larger than life, like the goat version of John Wayne. It's been very hard to let him go, but it was the right thing to do. He was ready, and as he gently passed from this life I could almost hear him whisper "Thank you." 

This was our last photo together. 
Nanno, your story of Cuzco's last day made me tear up. What a beautiful way to go!
Happiness is a baby goat snoring in your lap
Well.  I'm really sad about this even though I knew it was coming.  Every time I saw this thread light up I wondered if this would be the day.  I'd thought that for years.  Here we are and it still hits me hard.  I'd only met him a couple times but he was more or less the site mascot.  He's seen more great places and experienced more adventure than 99.9% of goats these days.  And now begins the post-Cuzco era. 


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