Sunday, November 04, 2007

My new pet vs. an Istanbul loudspeaker

The donkeys we met up with in Bulgaria were silent. Donkeys that are busy with their owners have nothing to say, they're just happily doing their jobs.

My donkey Jethro is too untrained to be "busy" yet - I can't take him on a long walk because he's afraid of everything and too strong for me to stop (I've sent away for a "be-nice" halter on the advice of my farrier).

So he has a lot to say, and it's very loud. This is when he brays:
  • When he's bored.
  • When I have "punished" him by walking away and leaving when he turns his rump to me. Then he comes after me and cries, like, "What'd I do?" He knows perfectly well.
  • When my friend Bob is trying to hunt deer in the woods. Luckily the deer are used to this racket and ignore him.
  • When he sees me put out treats for the chickens.
  • When something interesting happens in the night - a dog barks, for instance.
  • When he's lonely.
  • When he thinks it's meal time
  • When he thinks a snack would be in order.

He actually has an uncanny sense of time. He first cries for breakfast at 4:55 am. Then he calls at 6:10. Then he calls at 7:00 and 7:35 and then I take his breakfast at 8 am. It's those exact times every day.

However, now that Daylight Savings Time is over, that series begins at 3:55.

Hannah and I were in Istanbul and when it was "Call to Prayer" time at dawn, all the mosques turned on their blaring loudspeakers and directed them out into the street. Jethro's Call to Breakfast is similar to that cacaphony. I went on YouTube to try to find a donkey that sounds like Jethro...

This one is almost like his bray but not as loud.

And here is an Istanbul muezzin for comparison.

I spent sleepless nights before Jethro arrived wondering if the neighbors would complain about his racket. He's in a field fairly far from houses, but - one of my books said a donkey can hear another donkey from seven miles away.

So far, nobody has said anything except one of the wives next door. (I say "one of the wives" because in that particular household there are two. You would be surprised, the things that go on behind closed doors. But I never says nothing to nobody.) She sent an email titled "Noisy Neighbor" and my heart sank - but all she wanted to do was bring their four-year-old over to visit. I'll have to re-evaluate this neighborhood - whence all this tolerance? I'm very grateful.

Myself, I'm enjoying this sound, which I'd never heard before in my life, the sound which is, perhaps, the reason people in the suburbs don't have donkeys. I live alone - but not any more.

Next: more adventures in donkey 'training.' (I'm so bad at it, I have to put it in quotes.)

And now, it's 7:41 (now 6:41) - time to go feed Jethro. He does a happy little victory dance like Snoopy when he sees me show up with the hay.

A moment which, as you see I discovered at Google Images a moment ago, has been immortalized on boxer shorts.



At 12:07 PM, Anonymous sylvia said...

Ha ha ha!! You are a very funny lady. Describing the similarities between Jethro's braying and the muezzin is good, but the youtube links are brilliant. Hey, at least Jethro does a happy dance when he sees you. Great post, thanks so much.

At 2:49 PM, Blogger Zee said...

Hi! I came over from NaBloPoMo. I'm challenging myself to comment on as many blogs as possible this month as well as post.

I can honestly say I've never met a donkey... Glad to know Jethro (I don't know why, but that name seems perfect for a donkey) is at least happy to see you! Good luck in the training!

Happy Posting!


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