Monday, November 22, 2010

A Little Bit of Country

Had a lovely weekend with Pyro Man and his family. I drove down to Abilene and as soon as I got there, we hopped into his truck and headed for Brownwood. His family has property down there and I do believe he's been down there hunting just about every week since the season opened.

We got in a little too late Friday night to do any hunting, but you can bet we were up at 5:20 the next morning getting ready to head out to the deer stand. It'd been almost a year since my first hunting experience where I actually did get a spike. I wasn't as lucky this time, but I did see a good amount of deer including a couple of bucks. They are absolutely magnificent creatures and just the sight of them takes your breath away. I'm still amazed at how I can be staring at a set of trees, see nothing and then bam! There's a deer just staring back at you.

We spent some time of Saturday with the cattle his aunt and uncle raise. I can't help but think of two things when I look at cows. First of all, I think of my deep love for Chik-fil-a. Second, I think of a giant steak and I get a little hungry. That sounds just awful because these creature are actually pretty precious...from the front. Don't look at the back end. All sorts of mess is back there and it ruins the ambiance.

They have a whole lot of calves running around on they property they live on. There's another set of cattle on a different piece the family owns and we visited them later in the day (Please forgive me if I use any terminology incorrectly--what can I say? I don't know much about cattle.). I really liked watching the calves though. Some had really floppy ears that look so soft, like little silk pouches. There was a precious brown one that looked liked it walked off a carton of Bluebell ice cream. But one stole my heart. This plump little black one that just has the fuzziest coat ever. I loved him/her immediately. I didn't really get close enough to check out its nether parts--like I said, not always a pretty sight.

We moved on to their other herd to drop off a couple buckets of a protein mix for them to eat and give them a dousing in some worm medicine. I got to watch them round up the cattle into a pen, corral them through a shoot and release them to enjoy the rest of their grazing day. I had to ask if they named their cattle. Sure, they each had been labeled with tags, but I can't imagine having a creature and just calling it "34" or something. I had the pleasure of meeting Sassy, Brownie, Mo Joe, Ginger, and Crazy. I'm missing a few in there.
When you're driving down the road and spot a pasture full of Bessie's, you don't realize just how big they are until you're standing next to them. I didn't mind keeping my distance, but I felt like a kid a petting zoo, I had a real hankering to touch them. I did get to pet Sassy. She is a cow they raised from a calf, very sweet and easy going. I really wanted to touch Ginger though. She has beautiful dark chocolate coat that looked like someone drizzled  a deep cranberry color over her back. Ginger looked like she would be heaven to touch, just silky and soft.

As I was watching her graze only a few feet from me, she looked up with those big cow eyes. I thought, "This is it! She can feel me watching her and she's going to let me pet her!" She held my gaze, belched, licked the gooey protein from her nose, and trotted away.

Well, so much for that. I come from a line of cattle ranchers, but I ain't no cow whisperer. It's fine though. At least she didn't poop on me.

On the way out, we stopped to feed some catfish, very fun. Throw a bucket of little kibbles into a small pond and their fishy faces surface to gobble it all up. I didn't quite throw the food out far enough. More like I just dumped it on the , but I swear I really tried!

It's been a lot of fun joining Pyro Man on these outdoor weekends. I've got family that live on land, have raised chickens, and had horses. Dad is a rancher's son, Mom grew up camping and everyone in the family knows how to fly fish--except yours truly.  My life, however, has been a bit different with dance classes, choice concerts and musical theater. I've had many wonderful experiences, but I've really enjoyed being a part of these outdoor activities. It's very different from things I've done before and right now it's the perfect breath of fresh air I need.

On the way back we spotted wild turkeys--I'd never actually seen wild turkeys in real life. I told Pyro Man the story about how my aunt, Nannie, once hit a turkey with her car and how it messed up the front of her bumper. I also thought the turkey was frozen. I forgot she lives in the country and wild turkeys roam free. How much of a city slicker am I? Really though, I could see a giant frozen bird come bouncing out the back end of someones pick up and just smashing into her car. Can't you? No. Well, then I must be crazy.

Happy 100th post--I finally made it to one hundred entries after almost two years of blogging.

On a more serious note, if you readers will say a few prayers from Grandma and Piper. Grandma has been in the hospital all weekend and we're needing some positive thoughts sent her way. This is the grandmother we moved this summer, the Treat Lady, and the one I love so. Poor Piper has some sort of bacterial infection and has been with the vet since Friday morning--hoping some new medicines will push her back to good health. She is my puppy sister, my precious pup who just turned six this summer, too.

Have a happy Monday and a good start to this Thanksgiving week!

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