Today it was rabbits.
Most of the time that we spend in the giant reverberating emptiness that is the main building down at the county fairground it’s cats. But all of the 4H cat shows are done for the year, and this time it was rabbits.
Lauren has been working diligently all year to prepare for this. She feeds Hazel and Milo, cleans their cages, checks their water, and makes sure that they (mostly) don’t do any real damage to the house when they run around free. So when it was time for the 4H Rabbit Fun Fair today, she was very excited.
Really, very excited.
Like, “can’t get to sleep until well after midnight” excited. And also “up rattling around at 6am” excited.
Parents never get this excited about this sort of stuff.
I ended up taking Lauren and her bunnies over to the show at 7:30am because a) if we waited any longer she would explode and b) this way Kim and Tabitha could, theoretically, get some rest. It’s not like anything was happening at that hour – we did manage to get a primo space on the floor to set up camp on, but nothing else happened until 9am, after Kim and Tabitha arrived. They didn’t miss anything.
The bunny of record for these things is Hazel, a Holland Lop Senior Doe for those who know such things. “Chocolate Tort” for those who know them even better. Basically all this translates as “purebred brown rabbit with droopy ears who is more than 6 months old.” Milo, being your basic mutt of a rabbit, is not show-worthy but Lauren brought him along anyway because she insisted that his presence would help calm Hazel down. And Hazel was in fact fairly calm, so perhaps she was right.
This was the Fun Fair, which means it was a low-pressure run-through designed to get kids and rabbits ready for the upcoming County Fair, where the stakes are presumably higher. There were a number of workshops for aspiring rabbit show contestants – things like “claw clipping,” “ear cleaning,” “cage cleaning,” and “how to fill out the bizarre array of forms that these shows require without getting frustrated and entering in useless data and vulgar puns in the spaces provided,” a class which I think has general application beyond rabbit shows, really. And then there was the judging.
After that, Lauren took Hazel up to another judge for the Showmanship part of the day, where she answered questions about rabbits and their care and described Hazel in detail in order to demonstrate her rabbit knowledge.
Hazel got a Second Place ribbon in the Holland Lop Senior Doe category, and Lauren placed third in her category for Showmanship – not bad for her first ever show.
Nice work, Lauren. I’m proud of you.
But tonight? Let’s get some sleep, huh?