As we were turning down our long drive coming home from piano practice, imagine my surprise to find 2 of our neighbors handling 2 white horses, and there are 2 sheriff patrols all the way down at my home. Something about this pix was not adding up! So - what turned out to be a 7 hour escapade will now be condensed into a RD version, hopefully:
~ something(or someone's dogs - see a few entries below) spooked our 3 cows & 2 horses
~ they all tore thru the electric fence mangling it - disastrous!
~ the horses ran up the drive & fortunately stopped to eat pristinely manicured green grass at another neighbor's lawn (unfortunately for the neighbor- sorry)
~ she phoned the sheriff's office
~ another neighbor, who is older and arthritic, captured & haltered our horses
~ the 2 young, burly sheriff deputies watched from their vehicles (jerks!)
~ another neighbor came to help out with the horse rescue (thank you!)
~ Sheriffs go to leave & introduce themselves w/ a handshake - whew - was waiting for "Beast on the Loose" citation! (not complete jerks then!)
~ cows are no where to be seen - like they vanished into thin air
~ horses brought home & stalled in the barn
~ cow rescue next - following hoofprints - EVERYWHERE
~ we trudged thru about 15 acres of OPP (other ppl's property) shaking a bucket of sweet feed - NOTHING - no bellowing, no lowing, no nothing!
~ cross barbed-wire fences to stand on RR Tracks to see if cows are filet mignon'd
~ ripped clothing and faces from brambles & wild roses
~ realized that adrenaline is wearing off & that it's about 18* with the windchill & I'm not in my Carhartt's or knit cap! (my bad!)
~ Meanwhile, phoning Don, who works an hour from home, telling him to "GET HOME NOW!" instead of being at this really profitable meeting
~ oh - did I mention we noticed our recluse of a neighbor has brought in all 4 of his dogs! Two of these dogs normally roam the countryside terrorizing horses, cows & cats! Ha - at least HIS pristine lawn was shelled with hoofprints! (This guy NEVER brings in his dogs - you'd think they worked for the postal service - "thru rain, snow, sleet or heat!" those dogs are outdoors - even tho they don't own winter coats!)
~ Don gets home - gets in the farm truck - takes off - no words spoken
~ Don gets to meet ALL the neighbors in search of missing bovines!
~ Don is told at one home: "OH, so you own Annie & Dory!" (they have ear tags)
~ Annie, Dory & Steve (our cows) are in the barn of the local middle school principle
~ An hour later Don comes home & tells us all to load up
~ Dory contunies to slam Don and I (but mainly Don) up against the pen as Don attempts to harness her! boy is she honery!
~ Don sustains being stepped on by 1/2 ton Dory about 20 times...
~ Dory is Alpha Heifer, where she leads the others follow - we pray
~ Dory is secured to the back end of the truck (or so we think)
~ I'm pulling Dory behind truck as she's bracing herself against it! - lasso around her neck - too tight
~ find razor blade for Don to cut it loose
~ other neighbors join in the rescue, wife in truck, her dh on horseback (this is turning out to be a regular rodeo!)
~ we make it 700' down principle's drive & halter lead rope breaks from truck
~ oh, did I mention the sun is down & we're at the last stages of dusk before dark settles
~ we make it up to the main road, I'm in the lead w/ hi-brites & hazzards flashing, running a truck off the road so we don't end up w/ hamburger meat, prematurely
~ cows thinking this is great fun - throwing up heels & frolicing about
~ horse mount continuing to reign in unruly cows - along with Don on foot
~ cows cut thru pristine lawn of neighbor's house - AGAIN - boy do we owe her!
~ get the cows home - e-fence repaired - plan to take everyone out to dinner
~ Don realizes cell is missing - returns to scene of crime
~ phone found in hay pile!
~ show up at local family run restaurant - they close at 7p - it's 740p
~ drive to other end of town - they close at 8! but were gracious to stay open for us all!
~ Don and I now speaking to each other... PRICELESS!
~ following morning - bag academics for the morning - making cookies as peace offerings!
So - we thank God - no animals or humans were truly hurt during the making of this memory! We're thankful it happened on 2/19/08 and not a day later, due to horrible weather coming in! We're thankful it was a full moon to light the way home! We're thankful we have some great neighbors who willingly and unselfishly gave of their time & energy to help with the rescue! A huge thanks to J, J, B, J, A, B and all the neighbors who gave us clues to follow to find the cows who disappeared without a trace! Thanks for reading the RD version. Many details & bruises left out in the telling of thus said "GREAT ESCAPE"!