Sunday, August 9, 2009

Chaos. Frigging chaos.

Dad’s mowing lawn and I’m nursing a sore shoulder after getting rolled off the white colt. It was just the goofiest thing; he braced, then leaned backwards like he was gonna buck, then landed on his hip. I had enough time to pull my foot up and kick out of the stirrup and launch off before he came all the way over, which he didn’t, he struggled to his feet and stood there. This all happened after about ten seconds after mounting. So yeah, driveway rash. Nothing broke or bleeding though, so of course I got right back on. He apparently did something similar with Jenny, although he didn’t fall over in the process. So Dad got on him before I did, rode him around a little, and he was fine. Apparently, he just needed to turn himself inside out before the ride.

The reason we were riding in the first place was we needed to find a calf out of a first calve heifer. I found her this morning/afternoon looking like she had placenta, though we couldn’t tell if it was dead calf looking stuff or afterbirth-cleaning type stuff. So a friend came over and armed her, thinking she ruptured her placenta and we’d have to have the vet out for a C-section. He got into up to his shoulder and couldn’t feel a calf. This cow’s udder was hard and she was about seven to eight months pregnant. He should have been able to feel a calf. So, working off the idea that her excretions were afterbirth, Dad and I rode out to look for the calf. We supposed it could have been anywhere, that she must’ve calved Thursday night after I moved them at dark. But we found the calf right away, very dead and eaten on, and only about 30 pounds, about the size of Maxine, who stood over the calf, very into such interesting smells. So it all ended up all right and was the rather anticlimactic ending to the night before.

I got a call from the neighbors at about quarter to dark that black cattle had been spotted back in the field behind our place. Sure enough, Joseph and I walked back there and found a swath of damaged crops and cow prints. Basically, the chase began and when the dust settled, the cows run to death by well-meaning neighbors on four-wheelers, the cows had settled in the woods, it was half past dark, and we left them until morning. I said we’d be very lucky if no one miscarried after all that running around, since some of them are probably seven to eight months along. So Dad rode out in the morning, the cows had wandered back toward their pasture, and he ran them across the road and into the barnyard. I came down later and noticed the heifer. And so it was.

Joseph and his Dad had a marvelous time, although Joseph now knows why we dumb farmers always wear pants after entangling himself in a briar patch. But his dad had the time of his life herding black cattle in the dark so at least someone had a good time. Joseph did too actually, which surprised me. So everyone’s happy today, or at least not broken or bleeding, and getting ready to lay low for the heat of the day, 100 degrees plus heat index and 100% humidity after the two inches of rain we had last night. Fun times.


Rowenna said...

Hey--it's been awhile since I dropped a note. It sounds like you did have a mad weekend. I was at a family get-together with my mom's family, which only scrapes at the surface of insanity :)

How are things? Writing going well? By the way, what's the best email for you these days? Have a good one--talk to you later!