As regular readers know, we have two steers — Rascal and T-bone — grazing our pastures until July 1. As a former city girl, I will admit that I am both intrigued and a bit frightened of them; they are big animals, even at only just over a year of age, and I don’t know enough about cows to recognize their body language. Yet they are fascinating creatures — and very inquisitive. They are old enough to take care of themselves but still young enough to want to play — and lonely enough to be happy to play with pretty much anyone or anything that comes along. Now that the sheep are in the neighboring field, the steers have even taken to running the fenceline with them. It obviously doesn’t take much to entertain our new bovine friends!
The other day I was driving the truck and trailer through their field after having offloaded some sheep into the neighboring pasture. As the truck passed them, they turned and began to run with the truck. I was worried that they might make a quick turn and get hit by the truck, so I slowed down. As I did so, the steers slowed down to match my speed. When I sped up a bit to pass them, the boys sped up too. When I reached the fenceline, I stopped in preparation for opening the gate for the truck to pass through. As I put the vehicle into park, Rascal approached the truck, sniffing. I wasn’t at all sure what he was going to do — and besides that, I had to get out and didn’t want him too near — so when he got a bit too close, I gave the horn a tap. Oh, did he jump back! But in playfulness, not fear. He came forward again, so I popped the horn again, and oh, he loved that! He kicked up his heels and ran the field with T-bone, both looking very much like calves at play!
Yesterday I had to take the truck back through their pasture to offload some grain for the lambs’ creep feed. I parked at the gate into the Timber, right in the Fire Circle Pasture where the steers grazed. I offloaded the grain and hand-carried two loads to the creep house at the bottom of the hill. I returned just in time to see Rascal and T-bone leaving the area around the truck. I couldn’t help but wonder what they had been up to, since they certainly looked as if they were saying to each other, “Ooh, hurry, let’s leave! Here she comes!”
As I came up to the side of the truck, I could easily see what they had been doing! The entire driver’s side of the truck was covered in cow saliva! There were smears across the door, across the windows, and even on the back bumper. The boys had obviously decided that if they couldn’t figure out what it was by looking and smelling, perhaps a taste would shed some light on this odd object in their field!
So, until I have a chance to get to the car wash, I am driving around with cow licks all over my truck — and I’m smiling all the way!