Monday, October 24, 2005
So I was picking Jeff up from work today, and I got there a little early. I sat down to surf on the spare computer there and happened to look out the front window.
"Hey! Look, cows!" said Jeff at the same time as I noticed the procession of confused cattle that had suddenly appeared.
Twenty some-odd cows lumbered along the side of the road and there wasn't a single cowboy in sight. Traffic came to a halt as they barged their way across two lanes and disappeared in the direction of the city's main bridge.
Uh oh. This couldn't be good for rush hour.
Where had they come from? We're not THAT rural and down-town is only one block away.There are no cattle farms close by, and I'd just driven down that stretch of road without seeing any cows whatsoever, or any evidence of say, a cattle-truck over-turned.
As we were pondering the whys of it, a little brown heifer skipped right by the office window and headed in the opposite direction of the other cows. I decided to follow it and see if I could figure out where it had come from.
By this time there were several police cars stopping traffic in both directions. There was more snarled traffic and another ten cows or so cavorting further up the road. Attempts by police officers to grab them seemed fruitless.
I slowly followed the heifer as it trotted down to the river by the Monte Cristo Restaurant.
Two chefs in tall white hats, a lady from the real-estate office across the street, one local farm-hand, some large river-birds and me watched as the little cow plunged into the water and cow-paddled to the other side.
"Did you know cows could swim?", said one chef.
"I do now", nodded the other.
The cows had beef-tags clipped in their ears, somebody noted. Maybe they had just decided to make a break for it.
Meanwhile, calls were coming over the police radio that more cows had been sighted in two down-town parks nearby. Cow-sighting bulletins were announced on the radio. It was obvious the stopped traffic was going nowhere soon.
We started home in the opposite direction from our usual way, the only way possible, and circled through town on a most mercifully cow-free route.