Saturday, November 6, 2010


Springtime in northwest Montana

There are three jersey milk cows.  Number one in cow pecking order is a beautiful cream color lady with huge soft eyes.  Her name is Precious.  Precious knows no anxiety or fear.  She gives around 12 quarts of milk a day all by herself.  She lets me pet her forehead while she’s being milked.  The girls line up, always in the same order.  Next comes Serenity, so named by the boss lady to mellow her out and make her a nicer person.  Didn’t work.  She has a nasty temper and kicks Bob when she feels like it.  This is a big animal.  Kicks, if properly placed, can break bones. 

I walked out to say hello to the girls.  There's a new one Bob named Shorty, which I promptly said was inappropriate for a lady.  Her name is Violet.  She has the most beautiful eyes of any of them, including the famous Precious.  Well after I had started  talking to them, I heard Chuck, isolated in his own pen, with access to virgins.  He was bellowing when he heard my voice.  I think being a stud is not a bed of roses, the poor thing.  Chuck was named by me.  He came as a teenager and only seemed to want to lie next to Precious and take naps.  If he ever turns into a real bull, I will be amazed.

Violet may have been mistreated.  The Boss  rescues cows, and they soon find out they have landed in heaven.  Her coat looks like old winter fur that has not been brushed off.  She let me brush her today.  It is the sweetest thing the way the girls line up to be milked twice a day.  Violet knows that she is number three in line because she is new.  There are some others that will be in the line up eventually.  Bob is busy feeding them and turning their health around.  Some of them really don't like lightning and thunder, which we had two days ago.  These ladies make the most devine milk and cream I have ever tasted.  They are obviously happy.

Anyway, Violet reminds me of Shirley McLaine in Steel Magnolias, when she delivered one of the greatest lines ever written.  "..... I've just been in a very bad mood for 40 years."  But she doesn't look like a Shirley, she looks like a Violet.  You know... she does embroidery in the evening when no one is looking.

But that takes me to the good news.  Chuck, who loved to nap with Precious as if she were his mommy, has knocked up four young ladies!  Really!  He saw his duty, and he did it!  His equipment may not be much to write home about, but I guess it works. 

I'm going to put on my mud boots this week and take him some lilac blossoms, and scratch the top of his head.  He's the sweetest little bull you ever met.  Reminds me of Ferdinand in the kids' story.  He doesn’t want the grass I hand him as much as he wants to be petted.  He still looks like a teenager, and not very pretty.  But I love him.

We have wild daisys, and blue, purple, and yellow lupine up.  Spring is finally showing its face in northwest Montana after summer has officially begun everywhere else.  Up on the mountain trail behind my cabin are wild forget-me-nots and violets.

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