Judith and Stanislaw lived on a small lifestyle property. They were as self-sufficient as they could possibly get. They worked as a team. Every morning Stanislaw milked by hand the six cows and three goats. On Thursdays he took the cheese and butter hand-crafted by Judith into the market in town. It brought in their only finance, but it was sufficient to live on if coupled with other things such as vegetables that their lifestyle produced.
Judith had never milked a cow or a goat in her life, and Stanislaw had never made the tiniest block of cheese. Each had their talent and the team worked.
And then early one morning Stanislaw underwent a medical event – as the newspapers like to put a heart attack. He was dead.
There was nothing further Judith could do. She went out to milk the cows and goats. It couldn’t be put off. At midday she was still trying to extract a drop of milk from the first cow. Freddie, a neighbouring life-styler who had a nectarine orchard, came to the rescue. He didn’t know much about milking cows either but together they managed.
All that happened a year ago. These days Judith and Freddie produce a very successful brand of nectarine-infused cheeses.
I’ve always thought the number seven was my lucky number. I don’t know why but I suppose it’s because I was born on the seventh of the month. And besides it’s the number of days in a week. Seven! Seven! Seven! What could be luckier?
Then, would you believe, when the farmer gave me an ear tag it was number seven. It was so surreal! So wonderful! I am such a lucky, lucky cow! And to top off the excitement, today we are going in a big truck they say for a picnic. Can my good fortune get more exhilarating than that? It’s to the grounds of a big mansion called Abattoir – it sounds so very French and exotic. Oh this can only be my lucky day!
It was amazing. Mrs. Delores Bjorkbom had overheard her husband talking to his cows. It wasn’t human talk like “How are you doing, Daisy?” or “You’ve got lots of milk today, Bessie.” This was pure cow talk. It was a language she did not recognize. Nor had she ever heard anything like it in her life. How she wished she had some devise on her to record it. It was phenomenal.
Word got out. Barnaby Bjorkbom was a cow whisperer. He was more than a cow whisperer; he spoke cow language. Next thing it was in all the papers.
Delores confronted her husband. “We know you communicate with cows in an intelligent fashion. I have invited the Press here next Thursday afternoon for a demonstration.”
Barnaby complied. The Press, plus a few stragglers, arrived. Mr. Barnaby Bjorkbom walked out into a meadow of cows. Cameras began rolling. Dorothy Pinkham of the Billingworth Press probably got the clearest recording. It is transcribed below:
J’kjdgf’;kllj ;ljksafs;lkhgf asf’;lkdg;lk[pkehymgd. Tjoplok[po ;lket. Y;mlq ;kljlkj; loikre sdflkngpe er r lq. Ddf’;l’;re;m;l, k;kjlsjdgp pkjjiohert m pkjkj; ojgkjfgl;kjslf;k poortm ‘lkkl;lk;lkplp r dflkj jk’lgs k; moof kjnlk;jnfsd ls.
“Stunning. Absolutely stunning,” declared the editor of the Daily Sun. “As Mr Barnaby Bjorkbom spoke, all the cows looked up from their grazing, wide-eyed. They were engrossed in his every word.”
Ferdinand was the most selfish cattle beast in the herd. For example, when the cattle were all driven through a gate into a fresh pasture, every animal would begin to eat the grass just inside the gate. Not so, Ferdinand.
Ferdinand would stroll to the far end of the field away from all the other beasts. That way he wouldn’t have to share. He had all the fresh grass in the world. Several days later, by the time the herd reached the far end of the field they would say to one another, “Where has our grass gone? How come there is no long grass here in the field? Someone selfish must have been eating it.”
That is why Ferdinand was the fattest bull in the herd (and therefore the first to go to the slaughter house).
Daisy Chainey was among the first group of settlers from earth to live on the moon. The group of eight were still reliant on supplies being brought from Mother Earth, but gradually they were working towards being at least a little bit self-supporting. For example, Daisy had a vegetable garden.
Of course it wasn’t a normal vegetable garden; it was under a gigantic human-made dome that created the right conditions for growth. The exciting reality was, however, that the vegetables were being grown in lunar soil (with enhancements).
One day, Daisy was out digging in the dome when she made a huge discovery; she unearthed some bones. It was mind-blowing. The bones were carefully packed and sent back to Earth for investigation.
It didn’t take long for astrophysical palaeontologists to discover what the bones belonged to; they were cow bones. For example, the bovine caudal vertebrae was obvious once pointed out.
“There can be no doubt,” said Dr Stephan Sputnik, “that there were earlier attempts by cows to jump over the moon before one succeeded and the dish ran away with the spoon.”
(Today’s story is to celebrate what is apparently “National Tell a Fairy Tale Day” in the United States!)
Jack’s mother was absolutely skint, except for the cow of course which was dry and she didn’t have a freezer back in those days to freeze the meat.
“Jack,” she said, “Take the cow to the market and sell it so we can buy enough food to last us a few days. After that I don’t have a clue what we’re going to do.”
Jack took the cow – it was brown and white – and headed for the market. On the way he met an old man who offered him a handful of beans in exchange for the cow. Jack took them, grateful that he didn’t have to walk all the way to market.
When he got home, deep down his mother was really annoyed, but she patiently said, “That’s lovely, Jack. We shall make some bean soup with them.”
And she did that. It lasted for only one meal.
Oh! If only she had angrily tossed the beans out the window! What a difference it would have made to their lives!