Mabel was extremely pleased to encounter a baby goat right out in the open at the Little Farm in Tilden Park. In fact there were three of these long-eared, long-legged juvenile goats on the lawn, each attended by a teenage summer employee. Mabel had some doubts about just how to approach a goat, but Mamma showed the careful way to gently pat and pet. The goat stood still.
Mabel's books are full of animals, her head is full of animals and her speech is full of animals. Yet her Northern California city existence in the early 21st century decrees rare and few moments of contact with actual living animals. She encountered a herd of small-scale adult goats while visiting her East Coast grandmother last year. That remains a splendid memory. As far as I know, however, that was the only other time Mabel ever had a chance to pet one. She was fully prepared to enjoy the opportunity and the goat was prepared to put up with it.