The Unexpected

So, a person always expects an aftermath from tragedy. There has been a lot of thought and talk about the what ifs. What if the wind had been from a different direction? What could have been saved if one had only been home instead of at work? On and on. Worst of all is trying to understand the mind-set of people who loot the homes of the evacuated.

I have been expecting to see a lot of wildlife come through the yard due to their losing thousands of acres of habitat near me. I woke up the other day and right off, noticed one birdbath was empty. The deer often drain them when they wander through, so that was no big deal. Then I noticed the other one was knocked clear to the ground. That was unusual.

I went out and looked for deer tracks in the damp rain. We have gotten a little rain from the thunderstorms that recently passed overhead (such a relief for the fire fighters) and I found an easy trail to follow. However, the tracks I found did not belong to deer.

I raised cattle for over thirty years in eastern Colorado and I know cow tracks when I see them. I also recognize fresh cow manure. A good dozen or so cows from the neighbor’s herd had moseyed through my yard during the night and they left behind plenty of evidence of their escapade. Cow patties are at least one hundred times bigger than anything the deer leave behind. I can also vouch that without a doubt, they love the taste of Daylillies.

The cows followed my flagstone steps all the way around the house, leaving occasional deposits as they went, munching on the blue fescue that lines the walk, trying out the Iris but they must taste only so so, and decimating my Daylillies. A few steps were dislodged but overall they weren’t bad unexpected guests. I didn’t hear a thing and slept right through their visit.

The neighbor got them right back home the next morning and fixed the fence. It had been cut and we could only speculate it was done by people trying to get into the evacuation zone. I guess it takes all kinds.

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About Barbara K Tyner

A graduate of UCCS with a degree in English Lit., Barbara writes Children's Literature and fiction. Her popular children's series, The Badger Books, is co-authored with Barbara's daughter, Laura. Her first novel, "Wait Here, Wait There" deals with grief and Alzheimer's, two topics that are very difficult to manage in real life. Barbara volunteers doing school programs and speaking to support groups. National Parks, hiking, and snow-shoeing are in her list of favorite hobbies.
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One Response to The Unexpected

  1. Cattle are so much more benign than looters.

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