This past weekend, we visited some of Brian's extended family, who live about 100 miles away from us. The important part of the story for Helen is that when she visits them, she gets to see a puppy, and COWS.
Prior to the trip, we taught her how to say, "I want to ride the cows." We thought it'd be fun for her to announce this to Uncle J., and see how much he laughed. Instead, he got on his tractor and drove around until he found the cows, and hauled them home. Then he promptly invited the kids to come out to pet the GIANT bull.
When I say GIANT, I don't even begin to do this guy justice. Everyone stepped carefully around him, because one big swing of his head could have sent a grown man flying. Yet he munched on his feed and stood patiently while Uncle J. waxed poetic about desirable cow and bull features. He called the bull a "baby." And there was no way he'd let his whole family get on the same side of a fence with a bull who had a little attitude. So Helen did her petting, while I took lots of pictures of the whole herd. Believe it or not, those cows were so interested in me running around with my camera pointed at them, safely behind a barbed wire fence, that they hardly noticed the crowd standing in the field with them.
I have to say that it's a little unnerving to watch something weighing as much as my car make a conscious decision to keep an eye on me. And then proceed to do it, no matter which direction I move.
Oh, but where are these pictures, you ask?
Never fear, dear reader. I escaped the farm unscathed and am ready to unleash a torrent of pictures. As usual.
Helen ran around the farmyard, and I tried to get some good pictures of it. Oh, and by the way, her dress is from a Puerto Rican souvenir shop. No really, her grandparents went to Puerto Rico, and now that she has a pretty white party dress, IT'S THE ONLY THING SHE WANTS TO WEAR. Thanks, Nana & Grandpa.
Here's the sweet border collie named Lady that lives at their farm, herding the cattle at the slightest tsk-tsk of the tongue.
Here's a gorgeous old tractor that Uncle J. still rides all the time. He took it aross his field to find the cows, who, due to the seasonably appropriate, but blistering hot weather, were standing *in* a nearby creek.
After they heard the tractor rumbling around, they mustered up the strength to head our way, just in case we had stumbled and dropped a big bag of feed in their trough.
Here's the GIANT bull, with Helen petting him:
Brian can confirm this if you're skeptical, but I took at least 20 pictures of the cows. Nearly all of them were looking right at me. Really. It's a little scary. This one in particular was the "hussy" of the herd and pushed around some of the other cows who got too close to "her man." Apparently, that jealousy extended to a zoom lens on a nice camera, too.
The men contemplate the farm.
And here, we contemplate a beautiful day with family.