The Day I Hugged a Sheep – Carol Hicks

23 Sep

I was fortunate enough to go on the first Sligo weekend trip. While most kids were recovering from the tough week of school and veracious learning, my buddies and I were walking all over Sligo, surfing, going into pre historic cairns, and living the Eco-life. On the first day, having walked past tons of wandering sheep, I decided it was my irish destiny to hug one of them. When I made this goal of mine known to the rest of the group, I was greeted with apprehensive comments and statements “Oh, good luck with that” and “oooo that’s special” and “Sheep hate people, sooo…” Nonetheless, my spirits stayed high. On Saturday, after getting left behind on the mountain with my friend Emma, she and I found some sheep meandering close to the path, eating grass. Having appointed her to “sheep videographer” for the day, Emma brought out her phone, and we just knew that this was going to be the moment. We snuck up on the hungry sheep and, with my arms out stretched, I ran after the sheep. Let’s just say that the attempt was unsuccessful–sheep are faster than I give them credit– but the video is funny.

The trip continued and on Sunday, after attempting to hug sheep three times, our group ended up at a donkey sanctuary. We had a lovely lunch, pet some once-homeless donkeys and ponies; time was running out. Maybe Sligo was not going to be the place that I would hug a sheep, I thought.  It wasn’t until my buddy, Jade, and I were walking back to the bus did we see a sheep looking at us through a red fence. I approached and scratched its head and at that moment Jade and I knew this was it. I was FINALLY going to hug a sheep. I proceeded to climb over the red fence and Jade got her camera ready. Then, I hugged a sheep. There is no other way to say it; I literally hugged it and it did nothing. But, yes, there is video footage and yes, it was awesome.

I guess the take away from this experience is that if you put your mind to something, you can do anything. Furthermore, since Ireland is plentiful in adorable little wool fluff balls, hugging sheep is easier than it looks. Being an animal lover, I am really happy to have had this opportunity and I can’t think of a better place to do it because I am pretty sure Ireland is the sheep capital of the world (don’t quote me on it, it just appears to have a plethora of sheep everywhere.)

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