I am a cow owner.
I could be a cow owner… or a cow babysitter.
I’m not sure.
What I know is that this cow showed up, in the waterside garden, on the day we celebrated the launch of June.
In case that was unclear: The cow is not named ‘June’ (and we don’t launch cows here). Our boat is named June. I’ll type slower so you can keep up.
After we launched our boat, friends and family came back to the house for a celebratory lunch. Early on, I was talking with my friend Beth and she said something about propping up my cow. Since I did not have a cow, I thought, ‘Huh. I am not quite sure what Beth is talking about. Perhaps I heard her wrong… but how nice of her to prop up something of mine that needed it.’ So I thanked her.
Then, about an hour later, I was walking out the screen door (which did that satisfying ‘thwap’ when it closed behind me) and I looked over toward the water and then… what the…
I saw the cow.
First thought: ‘Beth really did prop up a cow!’
When you see a cow that is not yours, in your garden on an island that I’m pretty sure has exactly zero cows, I can tell you that you may be tempted to rub your eyes as if there is a bovine-shaped floatie obscuring your vision. I did this.
Then I went to investigate.
Said cow was (is) approximately 18″ tall and 30″ long.
It has duct tape on its front right lower leg and hoof, as well as on its back left lower leg and hoof.
The duct tape is long enough to hang off of said hoofs, and there are large galvanized nails driven through the pieces of tape, ensuring the cow cannot
gallop saunter amble wander away.
If I were to use the cow to make leather, my coat (or shoes) would smell a little vinyl-y.
Also it is a heart-healthy cow, as it is full of air and not steak or hamburger.
No one from the party – or anywhere else – has confessed to shepherding the cow to me (do you shepherd cows? I would have said cowherd, but it sounded weird (wHeird)). And the cow, herself (big pink udder), has thus far refused to talk.
So here’s the thing.
This could be a gift… or someone has gone on vacation and left this cow in my care without my agreement. If it is the latter, I feel that I am being taken advantage of in a huge way. Clearly the freeloader in question knows I am partial to cows, and would certainly care for one nailed to my lawn. If so, then they would also know I am bound to become attached to the dang thing, certain to be left in grief when they show up to claim it.
This is going to be a disaster.
And all because some coastal cow owner wanted to jet off to St. Barts on the cheap.
Resigned to my new role in cow rescue, each day I head out to check on the wellbeing of the cow. In the past week, I have noticed the small things make her special…
She likes to lie down after a good rain.
She doesn’t eat much (a little air once in a while will do).
And I notice her eyes are softening day by day. Initially, she was wide-eyed and wary, but now she seems to be settling in and wondering if she’s going to stay. She has that questioning look I’ve seen in the eyes of shelter animals…
How could I say no?
The answer is yes.
This is my cow now.
Should anyone show up, claiming I have just been babysitting her, they will fail to take her from me! I will make the case for abandonment (and perhaps kidnapping) citing the use of nails and duct tape (I have photographic proof). After nearly two weeks, I feel that I am on solid legal ground.
My friend Nancy (who is very skilled and experienced in rescuing furry, hairy, feathery, and/or scale-y beings) says that a pretty terrific gift for an animal in need is a last name.
Milkshake Dingle it is.
Gotcha Day: June 24, 2022.
I’m pretty sure that having a cow qualifies me as the owner of a salt water farm… on the coast of Maine.
Thanks for readin’.
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