Another story full of bull
Many years back when there was a need to acquire a lot of bull to service our cows, we leased a prime specimen — dubbed “Prince William” by his owner — from a rancher way up in the northern part of the state. We had agreed to lease Prince William and to return said animal when our cows no longer needed his services. When the return time came, guess who was elected? It seems my intrepid spouse claimed someone had to stay home to take care of the resident critters.
I faced a challenge. How was I to transport his royal highness from point A to point B when B was what seemed like light-years away? I couldn’t take a taxi or a Greyhound bus because the bovine’s big horns might tear up the upholstery, not to mention that no matter how neat or tidy, most bulls cannot be taught to use a litter box. A railroad boxcar could’ve worked, but that required a train chugging along on railroad tracks going in the right direction and stopping close enough to the target bull ranch. That was a pipe dream.
Airplane? Even if a local air service could be found willing to haul the critter, an aircraft was out of the question as a fat bull couldn’t fit through the skinny doors of a tiny fixed-wing plane, let alone sit in one of the seats. (I had a fleeting thought to apply to Washington to borrow Airforce One, but it was already in use hauling around our nation’s herd leader).
So, I pumped up the tires on the stock trailer, brought the license up to date, hitched the trailer to the bumper of our 10-year-old truck began the operation starting with a half hour of trying to back the danged trailer to line up with the corral gate. (I tried to watch my language in case others were listening — but I failed).
Finally, my considerate spouse achieved the goal of filling the trailer with a load of bull. Next, I visited the sheriff’s office to obtain a permit to leave the county in the company of a four-footed male bovine. (Kind of like a marriage certificate — one must have proof this Taurus belongs to you for better or worse).
Once on the road, all went reasonably smoothly provided I ignored the trailer’s sway and pitch caused by hoof-stomping that slammed the floor boards as fast as Irish dancers doing a jig. However, I forged onward. I got used to the noise and wobbling. (Sort of like getting used to the screech of bad music or the blab-blab of telemarketers or office-seeking politicians).
Things I was grateful for: The roads were bare and dry. The cross winds were fairly mild. Nobody stopped me to make sure I wasn’t rustling something.
Things I worried about: Pit stops for food, gasoline and bathroom requirements. Each time I halted, the big bruiser in the back set up a god-awful roaring which elicited accusatory stares from ordinary folk who don’t carry around that much bull with them.
Some six hours after I left home, I reached my destination. It took that long because I drove at chicken speed. Four gazillion vehicles had passed me. Sometimes I had to pull over to let a string of cars and trucks go by. (None of their drivers ever looked happy).
By the time I dumped Prince William into his owner’s corral, stress had shortened my life expectancy. It was, by then, late afternoon and I faced a return trip that would wind up mostly in the dark.
Things I worried about: Being blinded by oncoming car or truck lights. Being blinded by car or truck lights from vehicles swooping up behind me. (Staying awake was no problem as my eyes expanded to the size of silver dollars and my eyelids never blinked).
Things I was grateful for: The trailer was empty. The roads remained bare and dry. The winds remained relatively calm. Part way home, I pulled into the parking lot of a by-way restaurant, debarked, entered the restaurant, ordered chicken-friend beefsteak and thought of Prince William.
At long, long last, I pulled into my own barnyard. (It took several minutes to peel my frame out of the truck as it felt as if rigor mortis had set in).
Back in the house, I discovered my spouse had turned in and was sleeping peacefully. So, I woke him up. Groggily, he inquired: “How’d it go?”
“Same old, same old,” I replied. “Kinda like you, dear. Another story full of bull.” ❖