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Wild cows and a mother’s love


Jenni Fasselin


Many years ago we purchased a herd of cows. Included in the herd were two wild cows. They were so wild that they would take a person on foot for no reason whatsoever except for possibly in their opinion you didn’t breathe right. By “take” they would chase a person down intent on tackling them and causing bodily harm, and annihilation.
I had told my Mr. Wonderful they needed to be put back on the truck and sent right back to the sale yard. Of course he didn’t listen. In the year that followed that we owned those two cows they cause me so much trouble, every day with them was turmoil.
It was a miracle that Mr. Wonderful remained my Mr. and he was lucky this angry wife didn’t decide to plant him six feet deep after subjecting me to daily doses of fear of being “took.”
It was a year of adventures or better yet misadventures. Those two cows subjected me to everything from being chased daily to catching me in knee-deep mud. I was used as cow bait a time or two to get them in the corral. I can say I was in pretty good shape that year because every day my athletic abilities were tested as I raced from the cab of the truck to the back and scramble up in before I was obliterated on the feed yard by one of them. Those girls were all about eating lunch, and unfortunately it was usually mine.
One of the old dears made it out to the winter range. When it was time to gather the cows I was recovering from a surgery. Since I had not had a full recovery I was confined to gathering cows from the truck. My mom was worried for my health and decided to accompany me and help with the kids as well as the gather.
We were sitting in the truck at the bottom of a deep canyon and Mr. Wonderful was bringing a herd in. The plan was as he gathered them in from the mesa above he would kick them down the canyon and meet me at the road. I was to keep the ones he had gathered bunched and in the canyon, basically hold them from going back up, while he searched for more strays up above.
This had been a tried-and-true method for many years. But this year was the year we had the wild cows. The wild cows that Mr. Wonderful did not return to the sale!
Everything was going smoothly until one of the wild cows ended up in a bunch Mr. was bringing down. The few months that the old dear had been left alone wild and free out on the range have not improved her disposition. Not only did she dislike humans, she had developed an aversion to anything associated with them. In this case it was a truck.
As the wild cow spied the vehicle, chaos ensued! She successfully scattered the herd nine ways from Sunday. Cows went in every direction but the right one. So much for a plan!
Mr. Wonderful was not at all happy! A yelling match and hand signals erupted between the two of us. It was a good thing we were a quarter of a mile apart. Yelling at me, when it was his brilliant idea to keep those wild cows!
Without thinking and concentrating on getting the cows all back together, I scrambled up the hill, in the direction of Mr. Wonderful. A slew of profanity proceeded with each step. Profound profanity that would have made a sailor blush and a mule skinner cringe!
Each step I cursed the cow, the truck, Mr. Wonderful, the stupidity of wild cows, the trail, the rocks. It was step, swear and repeat. With every step I took the madder I got. I was weak from the past surgery and each step was excruciating and infuriating, and explicit language erupted. I spewed all the swear words I knew and then made more up.
That’s when the unthinkable happened. It was worse than if the wild cow had reappeared and tried to take me or have me for lunch. I had stopped for a minute to catch my breath and just so happened to look over my shoulder. There was my mother scrambling up the hill. I was mortified. The hill was much too steep and I immediately thought of her safety. What the heck are you doing? Are you crazy? You shouldn’t be out here climbing a steep slope, chasing a mad wild cow!
I was in the middle of chastising her when it dawned on me that she had to have overheard my rampage and the entire tirade. In addition to being mortified, now add embarrassed and humiliated. If what I had said could make a sailor blush my mom should be near a heart attack and be close to the need for resuscitation, from the shock. Not a proud daughter moment.
The wild cow and gather were temporarily forgotten. We helped each other back to the truck sliding down the steep hill and leaning on each other for support.
The moral of my story is: hug your mom and hold her close on Mother’s Day. Moms love their children no matter what cursed crazy path they may take and no matter which steep hills they choose to climb.

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