Today my Northern California granddaughter and I were working diligently in my studio. She was making a scrapbook to take with her when she goes to her dads after school is out. I was making a tray to add to my wine/grape vignette on top of my china cabinet.
As we worked in companionable silence, I happened to look up to see our brown mama cow in the back yard. I squealed, probably an expletive, (sorry Haily), as I immediately thought of my garden in the front yard. Last year, every time I had it all planted and looking nice, the cows got out and ate it.
My screeches alerted our vigilant watchdogs who began barking profusely and chasing the cow, driving her ever closer to my garden. I rushed out the door screaming for Rancher Richie! My four-pound Maltese ran out with me adding to the frenzy and along with it the worry that the cow (on the way to my garden) would trample her.
Can you imagine the noise?
Rancher Richie, hearing the commotion, came running out the back door with his jeans halfway on. Seems he was in the bathroom when all this came to pass.
Haily and I ran into the front yard to redirect the cow away from my plants. As we continued on around the house, I discovered our black mama cow in the fenced in garden area feasting on the strawberries. When she heard me yelling and saw me waving my arms, she stepped across into the next raised planter and began to trample what was left of the bush beans. Rancher Richie with his trusty “cow spanker” began driving them all back toward their proper pastures.
He closed the gate he had inadvertently left open, opened the larger one and ran the mama cows back where they belonged. Now he was after the babies, who were happily dining on white roses. They ran to their escape gate, and were sorely distressed to find it closed. For some reason they wanted very badly to go back through the same gate they came out of. It took some doing on everyone’s part to convince them to go in the larger open gate.
When we had everyone back into their proper locations, we began to have a discussion about how all of this took place.
It seems that Rancher Richie was watering the doomed garden when he glanced up and saw that he had also turned on the sprinklers in the back yard, where I had earlier hung the sheets on the clothesline to dry.
They were not drying.
He became so concerned with the state of the sheets that he ran out of the garden, leaving the garden gate open. Then he ran out of the pasture, leaving that gate open as well. He came to discuss the sheets with me and promptly forgot that he had left two important gates open. I suggested we leave the sheets to re-dry. He went into the house.
As Hailey and I went back to work, I marveled at the fact that the slightest diversion from the norm will set a series of mishaps into motion out here on the ranchita.
The sheets dried again. There were no discouraging words. Just a bit of squealing, mooing, and barking.