Chapter 30

 

I did not take such long trips for a year and was staying in my fortification most of the time. I kept on making wooden tools and clay pots. I even devised a way to make pots with a wheel, which made my work much lighter. I also figured out how to make a tobacco pipe, which to be fair, I missed a lot ever since I was shipwrecked on the island. With time I got better at making baskets.

I noticed my gunpowder had diminished significantly. I was worried I wouldn’t be able to kill any more goats once it was gone. The kid I tamed had grown old, but I did not have a chance to tame a male one, so the female died of old age. I did not have the heart to kill it.

It was eleven years since I first set foot on this island and all this time I was using gunpowder to provide myself with meat. Now I thought of finding some other way to supply myself with food and spare what was left of the ammunition. I made traps and pitfalls and although I did not succeed at first, eventually I caught a male goat in one pit and three young ones in the other. They were one male and two females. I let go of the old goat, but took the kids with me.

I had to make an enclosure for them because I feared they might run away with the wild ones once they matured. It took me three months, but I made a hedge around a suitable space where there was plenty of grass and water for them. Meanwhile the kids had become very tame and were eating out of my hand. In a year and a half’s time I had a small flock of twelve goats, and in three years’ time I had more than forty goats.

This way I was supplied with milk and meat. I experimented several times and at last I managed to make cheese and butter. My table was full now and I was surrounded by animals. I had my old dog, cats, goats and Poll, my parrot.

The only thing I still missed was someone to talk to.