Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Johnny on the spot

As I stated in my last blog, I owned a few cows. When they were still young calves, Pat and I took them in to the vet for shots, because as young ones, they were still too jumpy and fidgety to corral and keep them in pen and chute long enough for something like shots.

So off Pat and I went pulling them in a trailer (at least 25 feet long) behind his pick-up, old Blue, as he called it. We had to take them to Henderson, some 25-30 miles away from Fair Play.

First, let me say, Pat loved to talk, not just to friends, but anyone who took the time to listen and talk back. Naturally, when the vet finished giving the shots, and we got the calves loaded back into the trailer, Pat had to stay around and talk for a while.

That was fine, because I enjoyed Pat’s stories, too. What we forgot to do was lock the trailer while Pat stood and talked. Or, maybe I forgot to lock the trailer. Whatever, we didn't lock it back.

When he finished, we headed across the highway to a feed store. It was only a few 100 yards across the highway, but it was enough to stir the calves, and just as we stopped at the feed store, the door to the trailer swung open. I ran back there, but was a second too late and one of the calves made a run for it.

The calf jumped out the back of the trailer and took of running across the highway. And, mind you, it was noon and Highway 259 was busy. Was it ever! That calf was across the highway so quickly I could do nothing about it. We were just lucky it didn’t get hit by an 18-wheeler or something. Talk about a lawsuit.

The calf sprinted across the highway and up a hill into somebody’s back yard with me chasing behind. Me in my shorts, a T-shirt and Rockports – my usual cowboy wear, as I mentioned in my last blog. I was running after the calf and Pat whipped around in old Blue pulling the trailer behind.

By that time, however, the calf was well on his way to another back yard. I kept running, but Pat had to drive up and down the streets trying to follow me. Pat drove down one street asking if anyone had seen a white man in shorts and T-shirt chasing after a calf. It must have been a circus by now and I was the traveling show.

Two of the men by now were trying to help me. About that time, the calf – I’m sure scared to death -- ran back across Highway 259, back in front of all that traffic, and headed toward a grocery store. I was still in fast pursuit.

Then, suddenly, a white truck sped past me after the calf and, I kid you not, the passenger opened the door and, like a real cowboy, jumped out and bulldogged the calf to the ground in the parking lot of the grocery store. I couldn’t believe my eyes.

I was so tired from all the running, I couldn’t get my breath long enough to ask the cowboy his name. All a laughing Pat and I could get out of him was “Johnny.”

Boy, was he ever Johnny on the spot.


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