Monday, January 26, 2009

Desert Destination: A Visit to the New Calf

As I mentioned a couple days ago, the first calf of the year was born last week. I just had to see it, so yesterday my husband, Desert Boy, Henry, and I loaded up in the truck and went out to take a visit. This calf was born premature by a couple weeks, but it looks like it's doing okay. Not great, but okay. The mother is a heifer, a first-time mother, so she doesn't really know what to do, and because she had her calf early, just as the other heifers were moved to the birthing field, she and the calf are on their own for a few days and seem a bit confused.

Here's the mom, a black baldy. The calf looks mostly black because the semen was from a black angus bull. The mama cow is watching us suspiciously, which is a good sign. Our plan was to take a quick peek at the calf and see how it's doing, and then get out of there. 

Except sometimes plans don't always go as you expect. In this case, we finally got a bunch of rain. That extra moisture, coupled with a ditch that's running to make sure the cow gets plenty of water, made the normally drivable road into a muddy mess. And we started spinning. So my husband put the truck into four wheel-drive. And we continued spinning. The mud flew on to the hood, onto the windows--it was now raining mud. And the tires kept digging deeper and deeper in the mud. 

Finally, I looked at my husband. "I don't think we're going anywhere."

He grinned. "I don't either."

Usually we're in a hurry to get somewhere, but this was a Sunday afternoon and we had had a relaxing day, so we stayed calm. We got out to take a look and saw that the tires were half-buried in mud. We didn't have a shovel, so we got a bunch of sticks and put them under the  tires. But we were in too deep. We needed to go for help.

Fortunately we had on our coats and boots, so we were prepared to go for a little walk. We headed off down the muddy road, along the edge of the field, towards the misty mountains. 


And we kept walking...


We needed to go across the field and towards the white specks on the right side of the photo, past Henry, who was having a grand old time. Our house is near the trees in the middle of the photo. What, you can't see the trees? They're a long way off. 

Desert Boy walked for a while, and then he wanted to be carried. When it was my turn, I put him up on my shoulders and he used my ears like reins. I told him he really wasn't supposed to pull on my ears.

The field we walked through was good walking. It had been planted with barley last spring. After it was harvested, it was planted with alfalfa. The short stalks are from the barley, and the mat-looking stuff is the baby alfalfa.

The Canada geese really like the field and their scat was everywhere. They sure can clean up any leftovers. Soon we crossed the field and came upon a treasure--an old junkyard. The main equipment yard is huge, but not everything is in it. This particular junkyard housed lots of older vehicles. I took quite a few pictures, but in this post will just show the station wagons to complement the post earlier this week.
This is a Chevrolet Nomad. Don't you just love the trim on the side? Because it's a four-door station wagon, we can surmise it was made between 1958 and 1961, and this was the top-of-the-line station wagon for Chevrolet. The original Nomad came out in 1955 as a two-door station wagon and was produced for three years. I am still scratching my head about two-door station wagons.

This station wagon with the cool fin taillights is a Studebaker. It was kind of hard to get a good look at it because of all the brush growing up around it, but it's probably from the 1950s and might be a Commander model. 

We spent quite a bit of time looking around the old junkyard. I must say, if you have to get stuck, it's quite an enjoyable experience if you have good weather, comfortable clothes and shoes, an interesting junkyard to meander through, and a camera to document the whole trip.

By the time we got the backhoe and took it back to the truck, it was getting pretty dark. But it only took a minute to pull the truck out, and then we were on our way.

The little calf was up and exploring her surroundings. Probably tomorrow she and her mom will be moved with the other heifers and hopefully they'll get more accustomed to being together and figure out what they're supposed to do. 

3 comments:

Dessert Survivor said...

You are getting to be quite an expert on old cars.

You really managed to get a lot of different topics in one post.

Caroline said...

Love the new baby. She is very cute...

Your land is just so beautiful. And the air looks clean and fresh.

~C

The Incredible Woody said...

That baby is the sweetest thing EVER!

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