09 September 2014

Just Another Donkey Day

Five or six years ago, Brady went on a trip to Montana. The same Montana where we went on our honeymoon two years before that. And he went without me. To our honeymoon state that I love.

Hey…I’m as shocked as you are.

He went to help one of his good friends, Jess, work cattle. It’s not so much that Jess needed the extra help as it was for the experience. Brady and another guy flew to Montana and then made the hours long drive to the middle of nowhere, where Jess’s family ranch is located.

This is a different Montana than what we saw on our honeymoon. On our honeymoon, we were surrounded by impressive mountains. Mountains that no one would ever call a hill in error.

Side note: it always kind of irks me when I hear people call the hills of Texas mountains. Those are not mountains. Mountains, to me, are bigger than life and often snow-capped…the kind you can’t see the top of out the side window of your car unless you roll your window down and lean your head out the side, puppy-style. Their summits get lost in clouds, and it always looks like the road you’re driving on is going to drive you straight into the side of one, but you never quite reach it….

I wasn’t there, but it seems to me that this experience must have been straight out of a Lois L ‘Amour western. It was just the cowboys, the horses, the cows, and the open plains. They gathered the animals in, processed and branded them, and then filtered them back out into The Big.

They were there in June, but I’m told the weather was perfect and pleasant; and if you’re wondering how I can remember so clearly the time of year, it’s because he was gone over our anniversary.

That’s right. He went to our honeymoon state without me. On our wedding anniversary.

But he did bring me back some beautiful jewelry to make up for it…though I didn’t need it. Truly, I was happy he got to go and experience the Montana side of cowboying.

At least, I felt that way until I had to handle all of his animals by myself, in his absence. Basically, it was just hot and grueling getting them all fed and watered every day. Until the Day of the Donkey happened. I think every bad day I have from here on end is going to be called The Day of the Donkey.

We had this donkey named Dinky - this already sounds like a children’s book – that Brady used to train his horses for tracking and roping…that sorta thing. Dinky was snow-white. Well, at least he would have been if he wasn’t covered in dirt and mud and burrs from running wild in Piedmont.

So while Brady is gone, states away (on our anniversary, in our honeymoon state), Dinky gets OUT. LOOSE. FREE. As in no longer penned.

It is now my job to put the donkey back in the pen in the heat of the day in the bald sun out in the middle of the biggest open pasture. Also, I was in dress clothes. Why am I always dressy when this happens?

This time, I was dressy because I was going with my in-laws all the way to Arkansas for my first nephew’s dedication. All of this ACTIVITY happened about one hour before we were scheduled to pull out of their driveway. Because WHAT BETTER TIME.

There I was, dressed to the 8 ½s, trying to pull a dirty donkey with a lead rope across the pasture, getting soaked in sweat. First, I cajoled. Then, I tempted with feed. Then, I prayed and pleaded. Then, I cursed the situation as politely as possible – hey, I’m only human.

AND HE MOVED! Guess I was speaking his language. He actually started to move forward, all the while giving me the stink eye. I’m not kidding you, we got about two yards from the gate, and he STOPPED.

Then, he grinned and lit a cigarette.

After he watched me cry for a while, he finally crossed the last two yards and went back in the pen. But just barely. I had to put all my weight into the gate to get it to close on his behind, which he refused to suck in. Then, I drug my sweaty and sunburned self to my in-laws, so that I could make a really good impression on our first road trip, just us.

Yah. So anyway. Montana. Love it.

I love this Piedmont, too, but only when it’s donkey-free.

No comments:

Post a Comment