Today I did the most disgusting job I have ever had to do.
Greater love has no aunt than that she would try to source real-looking hair for her niece's rockinghorse.
My tail hair was ready to be picked up today. The butcher told Mum yesterday that my ox tails would be ready today. Mum was a bit perplexed as the butchers always have ox tail bones for soup on hand in winter. She only got back from the Kimberleys the day before and hadn't caught up on my blog.
I went to pick them up (and happened to have Mum in the car) we brought them home and dumped them into the laundry tubs.
The tail hair of the bovine creature starts above the end of the skin and bone that makes up the tail. The butchers had kindly given me a generous portion of tail so that I could harvest as much hair as possible.
There were also clods of manure stuck to much of the hair. Mum and I gave a quick rinse, then left them to soak. Unfortunately I didn't close the laundry door while we were in there, and the smell was starting to permeate the rest of the house. Pure, unadulterated feed lot smell. I closed the door and opened every window in the house that I could think of at that point, then Mum and I went onto the other thing we were working on.
After a while I couldn't smell it anymore and was hoping that the house was clear of it, rather than that my nose had lost all ability to smell. Mum informed me that it was the latter. Great.
Later I came back into the house and went downstairs to deal with them. You've heard of smells that could knock you over? I opened the laundry door and was almost knocked to the floor. I spent the better part of an hour combing (never using that comb again) out quantities of cloddy matter and cutting (never using those scissors again) the usable hair off the tails and securing the good hair with rubber bands.
By the time that was done I felt putrid. I had a meeting to go to and decided that a shower and total change of clothes was more important than lunch (I didn't have time for both). I bathed, changed clothes, showered (including washing my hair) and went to the meeting.
I had decided to wash my hair and totally change every stitch of clothing because I didn't want to be in a meeting, still smelling that rich feedlot smell, and thinking that it was in anyway possible that it wasn't psycological.
So I felt clean. Until I was offered a cuppa and biscuit when I realised that my hands STILL SMELLED OF MANURE. Every time I raised the cup or the bickie, I could smell it. In fact I can still smell it now. It's never coming off.
This had better be worth it.
The chances that this doesn't beat any possible parenting gross-me-out story?
... Approximately None.
Such a story would have to involve faecal matter and blood in hair and cutting through strips of flesh with blunt scissors. Oh, and SMELL! You can't win.
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