"It is hard to have patience with people who say 'There is no death' or 'Death doesn't matter.' There is death. And whatever is matters. And whatever happens has consequences, and it and they are irrevocable and irreversible. You might as well say that birth doesn't matter."
This is a somewhat belated farm story about a newborn calf, Sunny. Sunny was born on April 24th, if I'm not mistaken, and I met him for the first time on the 29th of April, on Earth Day. When I met Sunny, he was weak and couldn't walk very well. His hips were starting to sink in, and he had very little energy. After 5 days of off-and-on observance, my Mom and Step-Dad had not seen him nurse. When he did try to nurse, he gagged, and couldn't swallow. He lay on the ground, weak and dying.
At this point, nature should have claimed Sunny. Instead, he found himself picked up and held still, while a rubber nipple connected to a bucket was placed in his mouth. Mom held the nipple in his mouth and coaxed his throat, my Step-Dad held him still, and I held the bucket up. Sunny started to drink. (Meanwhile, Rick chased the encroaching cows away) He drank and suckled, until his pale lips started to turn red. He wrestled free after about an hour and ran after his mother.
The next day Mom, Rick and I went back to the farm to feed Sunny some more out of the bucket. Sunny had other ideas in mind, and instead made Mom and Rick chase him around the cow enclosure while he merrily jumped away. His blue eyes were full of life and his lips were bright red from sucking all night on his mother's udder, which has been nearly emptied by the time we got there.
Isn't it funny how nature works sometimes? How strange that a calf should need to be taught to swallow. Congratulations on surviving birth, Sunny. You are lucky enough to have people who care about you.
After rescuing Sunny that Sunday, we needed a break, and shot off some rounds out of a hand-gun that I bought earlier at a gun show. It's a .9mm Armalite, in case anyone was curious.
We played around for a couple of hours, and had some fun shooting guns in off-hands and upside-down. The telephone-pole piece that was holding up the target fell completely apart by the time that we were finished for the day.
Of course guns and cows are not the only thing that the farm has to offer. The wheat field was just coming in, and of course there are the obligatory chickens.
In closing, we've had quite a bit of rain in the plains this year, and the pond is definitely showing it. It's quite nearly to the top of the bank in this photo, and there's a strand of trees that aren't shown here that are mid-way down the bank and are four feet underwater.
That was our trip to the farm!