So...Whilst I was sick as a dog last week, my co-workers went ahead and threw my already planned 'retirement party' (on which I had demurred). I managed to get to the computer after 18 hours of misery to find wonderful party events where I appeared as the guest of honor in cardboard cutout format.
Well, today, the other shoe dropped. My supervisor returned from his family holiday and called my in to his office. He then told me that the staff had all come together to get my retirement gift. I told him I was happy with the teeshirt ('Smart Ass' with the 'ass' portion as a pic of a burro), but he said no...the real gift was two actual burros. He had contacted the local burro rescue lady to find out what would be involved in placing a couple of rescue burros with my future acreage. He then took up a collection to augment the institutional sum for retirement gift and said he met the limit with ease. Evidently, my coworkers were charmed with the idea of giving me two live burros as a retirement gift.
Think really, really large dog with hooves. Two of them.
Yes...It's not like it is some kind of white elephant.
I had expressed to a friend and coworker that my intent was to retire to the exurbs, where my domestic partner has five acres of 'hobby farm' land and raise chickens and, maybe, foster a couple of rescue burros. Well, she passed this on to my supervisor along with the contact for the local donkey rescue organization (Peaceful Valley Donkey Rescue, which has a site on Facebook, and to which I had already made an on-site visit) and he took it from there. Evidently, the university supplies a budget for gifting retirees, but he still had to 'pass the hat' amongst my coworkers. They were amused and charmed with the idea and he told me it was quick and easy fundraising.
Of course, when I told Swimmer, she thought it was some kind of joke, because we currently live on a tiny lot in the middle of the city and have no place to keep two burros. I had to assure her that the connection had been made and the necessary funds collected, but that the actual acquisition and delivery would wait until we were ready...all I have to do is reconnect with my supervisor and he'll make the arrangements.
Will they be pleased to share acreage with a goat?
Probably. There are real goats at the farm right now. As well as a couple of cows. Burros are social animals; indeed, so much so that it is not advised keeping one alone. They need companionship, of horses or other barnyard animals (or humans), which is why I will be obtaining two, rather than just one.
Here is the outfit which is arranging for adoptive donkey homes locally. Basically, they are a couple linked with the national adoption organization who have acreage on the periphery of nearby Oregon City.