It’s a little late in coming this year. I have been told that every thing is a good three weeks behind. I believe it because the lilacs are just now blooming and they usually try to bloom in early may. We have been run ragged trying to get every thing done at once. The garden needs planted, the planter needed filled with seed every couple of hours and the pairs need sorted and worked.
All the corn is planted at least, finally. The poor neglected garden gets a little attention in our spare time, haha. Now the main course of business is the sorting of pairs. This year they are sorting in the corrals and I get to ride my horses for once. Coyote and Jerry have been brought out of retirement, hooray for me but they aren’t very happy about it. I can’t decide which one of them work better for it. Coyote gets the job done quickly, very quickly, some times to quickly. He is always in a hurry and now rather worried about it all since a cow took him last weekend. His nerves are quite delicate.
Jerry is very precise, and slow we could say deliberate or out of shape but she has never been a fast mover when not cutting cattle. As well behaved as she was, especially compared to Coyote, I’m not sure I have the patience to wait for her to arrive at our destination.
Last weekend we began to work the calves. The pairs are sorted into bunches of twenty five because the vaccines come in bottles with twenty five doses each. The calves are sorted off of their mothers then ran through the calf table for shots, an ear tag and the bulls become steers. Then they are loaded in the stock trailer and their moms into the semi for the trip to pasture.
With the uninspiring job of loading calves into the chute my easily bored husband and I need something to keep us entertained. We usually think of names for the calves as they go through. This year we noticed that we had nearly the same number of calves as letters in the alphabet. So starting at Abigail we continued through Delmer, Eugene, Ichabod, Karl, Niel, Percy, Reginald, Thomas, and Xersis until we reached Zulu.
Standing in what I thought was a safe spot outside if the chute a small rotten calf stuck its leg though an opening and kicked me hard in the shin. My cattle pushing husband was in what I would have thought to be the dangerous spot and he didn’t even get his foot stepped on. My mother-in-law tells me that this is exciting work. Although I suppose there is some excitement in trying to avoid agonizingly sharp little calf hooves mostly it seems dirty, sweaty and painful. I guess it depends on your point of view.