“Clara, you’re in the next class.”
“Thank you, mom,” yelled Clara, sounding anxious.
I am in the next class, 4th competitor in the ring. I hope Billy doesn’t get away this time. Looking at the crowd, I see that everyone is still. All eyes on the sheep being shown. I guess the ‘Royal Agriculture Winter Fair’ (R.A.W.F.) is nothing like all the other sheep shows, everyone here is so competitive. Me, Clara only 12 years old, this has been my biggest dream, forever. Not only wanting to come to this high of competitive fair, but also with the hopes that I will win.
“Clara? Clara? Clara Thompson? Does anyone know where she is?” The announcer yells as I am standing outside the ring more nervous than I have ever been in my life!
“Honey, enter the ring!” My mom says as she shoves me forward.
I guess my chance to win is now, I better not blow it. Look at the judge, smile, hold lambs head and don’t let go. Those are the only things I have been thinking since we arrived here in Toronto. I whisper to Billy to be good, and don’t run away. I have been practicing with Billy ever since I saved up enough money to buy her. (Which took forever)
Next thing I know is that Billy and I have already made A full circle in the ring, and the judge Mr. Worsom who is standing in the middle of us all, dressed in his fancy black suit, raises his 2 hands and I know then to stop Billy and set up her feet. I instantly kneel down, put her back 2 feet square and move her front left foot so it’s beside her front right foot. She stands perfectly, so I stand back up holding onto her chin with 1 hand while scratching her pole (the top of her head) to keep her calm, with my other hand. Look at the judge, then lean back to make Sure Billy is still standing square. I repeat this over and over until the judge motions us to move again. My heart starts pounding, I then look up only to notice that Mr. Worsom is walking toward me. I instantly try to remember the name and date of when my sheep was born, but I can’t.
“Hi, how are you today?” Mr. Worsom asks as I start to remember everything about my lamb.
“Good, how are you?” I say as my heart starts to settle down.
“Good, what kind on lamb do you have here today?”
“Um…Um…U… Oh, yah I have a Dorset pure bread lamb born on April, 13th, 2016″.
He then walks away, while Billy and I keep working together trying to win. I worried that I made a fool of myself by forgetting what kind of lamb Billy is, but I just try to stay calm. He then motioned to a person in front of me to go and line up in 1st place. When he does that, I feel my body go into auto pilot, I feel myself stand up straighter and look more confident, trying to prove to him that we deserve to win. The next parts of the show all seem to flash before my eyes. He then points to me to go line up in 2nd place. I lead Billy with great determination and line up beside the kid that is currently in 1st place. As I was walking toward the person in 1st while leading Billy, I looked around to try and find my folks in the audience. I glance into the bleachers for them, once I find them sitting, I then see my dad’s lips move, and he then whispers to me, “You can do it!” From that point on, I know I can win.
I set Billy’s feet up square again. Once I reach my spot in 2nd place, my worst nightmare happens. She bolts from my hands and runs in circles. I feel my heart break and my dreams shatter before me. One of the nice audience members catches Billy and brings her back to me. When I finally get her in control again, I stand perfectly still trying to keep a smile on my face. I then don’t know whether I should go stand in 2nd place again or whether I should just wait until he places me in last place where I now belong.
I don’t know why, but all the sudden I march and stand in 2nd place. The judge has then placed everyone and walks towards me again. He then asks how badly I want to win junior champion lamb showman. So, I tell him the truth, I tell him I want to win more than he could ever imagine. He accepts my answer but then tells me to pull Billy out of the line and then to place her feet up again in 2nd place. I feel like crying and am crushed; I don’t think I will win. The judge then walks and stands 2 feet in front of me and the person currently in 1st. He then motions us to switch places, and then he does a gesture that means he is finished judging the class.
I won, only 12 years old and I Clara Thompson have won the overall junior champion show person. It feels great walking out of the ring with a huge, shiny, red 1st place ribbon, but it doesn’t feel well deserved.
“Way to go Clara!” my mom and dad yell as they congratulate me.
I say thanks, put Billy in her pen and then walk towards the judge to ask why I won when my lamb was the only one that got away.
Mr. Worsom then proceeds to tell me that the reason I won was because I never gave up and never got frustrated at my lamb. He also tells me that even though Billy was the only lamb that got away, I still led my lamb better than anyone else led theirs. From that point on, I knew that I had achieved my biggest goal in life by the age of 12! And from that experience, I learned that you should never let anything stand in your way, and never give up.
By Newspaper Club Member, Kelsie A