On May 9th I loaded up my two alpacas that were born on my farm in the past two years (Lockstar and Aria) and took them to the CABA Classic show in Portland, Or. Not having many animals on the farm to compare them to, I wasn't sure how they were going to place at the show. It is easy to look at your animals in your barn and say, 'Dang, I have produced some nice stock, champions even!' But the rubber meets the road when you get them to a show and compare them with what other breeders have produced.
On Saturday Lockstar was shown. He took 1st in a class of two shorn grey suris. Great start, but class of two doesn't give me as much to be concerned about. Aria was showing 1st thing Sunday morning in a class of nine white juvenile females. Yikes! That means three alpacas are going to leave the ring with no ribbons. What if Aria is one of them?!
Come Sunday morning and I was there bright and early. I haltered up Aria and cleaned off all of that hay to get her looking pretty. Then the announcer says that they will start with the production classes. Whoo hoo, more time to be nervous. An hour later production classes are over and Aria is again covered in hay. I get her cleaned up and a half hour break is announced. Uh oh, here we go again. This time I hovered over Aria so I wouldn't need to pick her clean of hay again. Finally, FINALLY, I get into the ring with Aria. Feelings of sickness washed over me. When the judge came over for a 2nd look at Aria I wasn't sure if he liked her or was trying to figure out if she would be one of the unfortunate few who didn't make the cut.
After 10-15 uncomfortable minutes the judge pulled Aria up to 1st place!!! Thrilled doesn't even begin to describe how I felt! When we went back in for round two, the judge pulled up Aria again, this time for reserve champion! Wow! What a great first!
So, here I am a few weeks later, still grinning like the Cheshire Cat! I am looking forward to more great firsts in the alpaca industry and hopefully more championships!
And good luck to you as you press on towards firsts in your life and your business!