Wednesday, July 30, 2014

When Cows Fly!

When pigs fly was a favorite euphemism of my Grandmothers. Growing up I am certain I heard it at least a dozen times a day. She was a hillbilly and a writer making for a rather interesting imagination and vocabulary. I soon learned that there was not a more emphatic no than 'when pigs fly'. 

For the first 40 years of my life I had no doubts about the aerodynamics of four legged farm animals. Pigs, cows, sheep, goats and even the family dog did not fly! It was a law, or so I thought.

That was of course until I saw with my own eyes that cows in Iowa seem to have discovered the joy of flight. Imagine if you would my shock at discovering that my Grandmother may have been wrong all along. 

It happened on a sunny summer afternoon along a two lane road in the heart of Iowa. My fourteen year old son who had just got his learners permit was driving when we saw a pick-up truck pulling a cattle trailer approaching in the oncoming lane. From behind the trailer we saw a flash of black and white sail through the air only to land in the center of our lane and casually walk to the side of the road. As my son hit the breaks, I exclaimed "What on earth was that?"  "It's a cow mom, A COW!" 

Just then a calf flew out of the trailer, and I repeat, a calf FLEW. It did not fall out of the trailer but jumped flying through the air. Landing smoothly, the calf proceeded to walk toward the cow. By this time my son had slowed to a crawl and was honking the horn as we came even with the front of the trailer. 

A third cow must not have been convinced she could fly, for just before the end of the trailer came even with us, the last cow jumped out of the back of the trailer and unlike the two before, her landing was anything but smooth. She was okay though and got to her feet and wandered off to join her friends. The driver of the truck must not have realized what had been happening as he never slowed down, and soon he was gone. To this day I wonder what he thought when he got wherever he was going and found his trailer empty. 

So the next time you hear 'when pigs fly' just remember anything is possible even if only a little bit.

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