Based on a true a experience here in the Lakes Area
I opened the gate, looked out, and didn’t see my cow. As I walked through the gate I could feel the soft ground, turned up by cow hoofs. I carefully avoided the fresh cow pies. Her name was Lady. Ya, strange, my best friend was a cow. I even thought more of her than Roscoe, the family dog. I had him stay in the barn when I would see lady because he was a heeler and they had a love-hate relationship.
Lady was about three. A beautiful Texas Longhorn that came early, she lost her mom. She almost died, but I took care of her. Her ma, like my own, had been very sick. Dad found her all cuddled up and all alone. She was small so Dad picked her up, brought her to the barn and... I guess It was love at first sight. My brothers all had horses and me a pony. But for some reason there was something special about this cow. I felt for her right in my heart. I knew what it was like to lose my mom and in some way she filled something up in me. She looked at me, I looked at her. Maybe she thought I was her mom. I didn’t care and I looked after her.
My older brothers call me Little Sammy and they teased me for having a pet cow. I didn’t care! She was the best friend I ever had. It was Little Sam and Lady. Lady was tame; I rode her or she would follow me everywhere. We would go for walks in the woods, fishing off the shore and I even rode her double with my neighbor Annie from time to time.
It was strange this morning, for Lady was missing. She always waited for me. I just had to find her!
Dad was gone to town and my brothers were out working, so although I was not supposed to I walked down the hill towards the herd. I figured it would be alright. I walked down the hill and yelled for her.
I walked through the woods, yelled for Lady and suddenly I heard the ground shake! It was the bull, Geronimo! I turned and ran as fast as I could. In seconds he was almost on me. I screamed! I knew Geronimo was mean and he protected the herd- he was only doing his job. Geronimo was a killer. He would go after wolves, bears, anything that came near the herd. I should have known! His head was down, it was all over for me!
I was side blasted. I fell, fading into darkness. When I awoke, coughing, I could taste dirt and had a mouth full of it. It was dark now, my head hurt, and something was licking me. It was Lady! She was hurt! She had protected me from the bull. I was dizzy. Lady had blood on her nose and she was breathing funny.
I could smell the dirt. We were both laying in it, both hurt but together. Like back when we had lost our moms. I didn’t leave her. I held her and I began to cry. In a while I heard one of my brothers and could see a lantern. I yelled, “Over here! Lady is hurt!”
My brother told me her ribs had been broken, she couldn’t breathe and she had little time left. I held her and told my brother what happened, and that I wouldn’t t leave. My brother stayed with me and this time he didn’t tease me. I noticed he also had tears on his cheek.
I put Lady’s head in my lap and I talked to her, saying all the kind words I knew. I also said I was sorry and I thanked her. My brother picked me up and carried me to the house, and he said he was sorry for teasing me. That he didn’t realize what that danged old cow meant to me. Lady died that night; she had given her life for me.
We all, my dad and brothers, buried her up on the hill. It was almost as if mom was there too.