Monday, May 19, 2008

Never Mind the Bullocks!

The other night I decided to make the most of my new lifestyle and go for a nice relaxing walk.

Halfway along a local public footpath I came across some young cattle ( I think they may have been bullocks ... but I wasn’t intending to get close enough to find out!) escaping over a low fence onto the path. At the sight of me they ran ahead. About three were left in the field and they pelted in the same direction. Being a stubborn girl and used to hiking I decided to carry on - albeit carefully! They kept moving ahead of me, with two more eventually joining them. One was now left unable to get out to the others and mooing pitifully.

I knew we would soon be reaching the road and as I didn’t think it would be the best idea to drive a herd of cattle onto it at dusk I had an idea … there is a picnic area slightly off the path that would conceal me from view. I thought this would give the animals a chance to rejoin the one they left behind. I sat there for some time … no sign of them … despite the melancholy calls from the stranded cow.

I couldn’t stay there all night so I decided to try and move on. This time the cattle seemed to have decided that enough was enough. They faced me, and then started to walk slowly towards me. I back-tracked a bit and they continued to follow me but still slowly and at a reasonable distance. I thought this would be good – I could lead them back to where they had broken free. I started whistling to encourage them. Dutifully they followed.

With them heading back in this direction, and feeling like some bovine pied-piper … I thought that if I went back into the picnic area they would continue past - back where they were meant to be.

Bad idea!

Very Bad Idea!

They came running in to find me, obviously believing I was going to feed them … one way or another! Somewhat intimidated by these stampeding creatures I climbed on top of the picnic table. Shouting and waving my arms only encouraged wild eyes and snorts.

‘Do the police come out for women encircled by cows?’ I wondered.

Fortunately, rummaging in my bag for my phone seemed to spook them. And they all ran off one by one – back towards where they had broken out from.

Relieved, and slightly wobbly-kneed, I walked the short distance along the path, avoiding the steaming splatter that the cows had left behind, out to the road and up the hill to home - occasionally checking over my shoulder that I had no more stalkers.

By the time I got in the door I was in fits of laughter – trying to imagine what I must have looked like perched on a rickety old wooden table surrounded by loads of cows.

Who says country life is dull?!

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