Help from the Monsters 1994

CoonTen heifers were out of the pasture, and these two senior citizens were trying their hand at corralling, but without success.  There was one good thing about it, all ten “girls” stayed in a tight-knit bunch and didn’t spread.  One of the numerous times when they bolted and ran, John threw the prod at them, hitting a white heifer on the back causing her to put on a show kicking up her heels and bucking.  He said, I’ll go to the house and get my rifle and we’ll have steak for supper – I bet I can catch them that way!”

I had never given praying for help a thought and to say the area is isolated is an understatement – we were on the backside of nowhere and nobody was there.  But then it happened – I saw these two enclosed tractors coming toward us as though thy sensed our dilemma.  They were moving very slowly and to this tired old gal looked like monsters from another planet – or at least dinosaurs of old.  I’ve never been so glad to see another human in my life – in this case it was TWO other humans.

The smaller of the machines hurried to head off the wayward herd, but when he blew his horn, they were more frightened than ever and what I saw looked like the back end of a small herd of buffalo going across the prairie.  As I talked with the driver of the largest tractor, he told me they were just leaving following a bad situation, too.  The small tractor had been stuck and the large one came to pull him out and they were going home via a new route.  Thank goodness they were!

Finally, in the distance I could see the herd going down the road toward the house, but I was two fields away and could never get to the gate in time to open it.  Here’s where the driver of the large tractor took over – he ran to manage the gate, while the small tractor helped with the herding. There is seldom any traffic on this little dirt road, but call it fate or the Hand of God, or whatever, about this time and from the other direction, a neighbor drove up and helped with gates and the finalizing of the corralling episode.

By this time I had started my final walk toward the house and was grateful for the “cut” fence so I could enter there and have better walking conditions.  With aching knees, I huffed and puffed my way back to the yard wondering in what condition I would find the cake still in the oven.  As I entered the yard, John said, “Where did you leave the truck?”  I had forgotten the truck and he had to hitch a ride with the neighbor so he could drive the truck back to the house.

As I took the cake from the oven, John informed me he was going to make fence repairs and at the same time the chicken litter trucks arrived to start spreading that odorous fertilizer over the pastures.  That’s another thing about which I can be thankful – I didn’t have to walk through fresh chicken manure.  It’s not all it’s cracked up to be – this matter of country living.

Billie & John Crumly 1945 Part of what Tom Brokaw called "The Greatest Generation"