Doing my best Forrest Gump across frozen turds

Written by Submitted

I don’t often post much on Facebook, and it isn’t because I don’t enjoy reading others thoughts, life moments and so on, it’s usually because I don’t take time to share some of the events that happen funny or not so funny at Y2 Cattle Co. This one however makes me laugh and cry all at the same time…..both of which are good for the soul!
Yesterday morning, there was a cold north wind blowing across this still half frozen country. And like most every morning, I head out at sun up to check the calving progress, hope for no popsicle calves and that the coyotes haven’t engaged in a veal feast throughout the night.
Singing to myself in best Sunday attire of layers and layers of winter chore gear topped off with a Russian flap hat, I bounce over the frozen ground, through the purebreds, across the creek and into the heifer pasture quite uneventfully.
As I get closer to the main group of heifers, most laying snuggled in straw and hiding out of the wind, there he is—–a soon to be first of his kind!! A newborn calf, dried and licked off, half sprawled out, shivering and cold, but certainly not too far gone. I bawled like a calf, looked all around and not one heifer even blinked or turned their head.
So I pick up my new friend and loaded him on the side by side with me sitting on the seat and tucked under my arm rubbing his new fur and sharing some warmth to keep him perky til we get to the tackroom.
As I wasn’t finished the job yet and he wasn’t dying instantly, I went to see what the hub bub was about with four heifers not far away. Three other heifers were all chasing the same calf, licking, bawling, pushing, I’m sure you know the drill. So thinking I was saving the world and a ton of work later on, I jumped off the side by side. I thought I’d at least split this mess of fresh calved heifers and two hungry calves up to get a better look and help convince them only one could be the mother of that newborn calf.
As I was just getting one heifer convinced her calf was over in the straw, I heard a most familiar and suddenly unsettling sound through my fur lined flaps and biting wind. It sounded like an ATV motor accelerating. Funny, I’m no where near the side-by-side and everyone else is sleeping that I’m aware of. And then that sinking feeling – oh no, this is going to be bad!
I spun around to see my new found and forgotten friend decided he was the next Mario Andrette and he was in training for his debut Indy 500!  He’d fallen off the seat on the passenger side and onto the gas pedal!
With his neck folded underneath him, the awkward position looked none to comfortable. As he struggled to straighten out he’d floor it, let off, punch it, let off, slow down let off, but never did he stop! So there I was, doing my best Forrest Gump across the frozen turds desperately trying to think of when and if I catch this runaway, how am I going to get that calf off the pedal while I jump in and paw for the brake and the ignition switch all at the same time. Like all heroes do, I’m sure, I just reacted.
Details would just unfold as they happened, and yes that calf was in a pickle, but not near as much as I would be if something tragic happened to our beloved most useful tool on the place at this time of year! In fact, when our farm truck was stolen out of our yard last week, all Steve could say was “at least it wasn’t the side-by-side!” And now I have a newborn calf cruising the pasture, in all his uncomfortable glory, blindly headed for the pumphouse in 40 yards and the fence in 100. This isn’t looking good!
Luckily, as I jumped, he let off and I bailed onto the seat, grabbed his leg, lifted with everything I had, slammed on the brakes and averted the soon to be tragic unexpected saga from unfolding further!
Whew! Well I’m happy to report, Mario is just fine, warmed, full and his mother loves him just as she should. As for me, I’m glad to have that lightning speed that my long and flowing, or dare I say, more like stove pipe legs have blessed me with!
I share this with you all because as I laugh at the antics and another day in paradise, I’m thankful for the life I’m blessed with and the parents that brought me to it. I’m 36 now and not a day goes by that I don’t think of my Dad (Greg Veno) who never got to see 37 and passed away 22 years ago yesterday. If I’m ever lucky enough to have a quarter of the character, sense of humour, patience, determination and strength that he had, I’d be blessed. I know he likely had a good laugh at that one…Love you Dad!
Janet Yule (Veno)
Gleichen, Ab.

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