Run/Walk/Sheep

      square fencing

       FUNNY HOW EVEN the most routine days can throw up a surprise. I delayed going for a run/walk after watching and being strangely drawn into the world of archery and ping pong at the Rio Olympics. Finally, I turned the TV off, got my running gear on and headed out the door on a typically windy grey day, the sun still bearing some sort of centuries old grudge against Scotland.

I ran, I walked, I ran, I walked, and was out of breath at least 50% of the time. Conveniently there’s a route about 4 miles long (that’s 1 light year to those on the metric system) that loops all the way back to where I stay. Part of it is a boring stretch along a main road, but then its quieter and once past a saw mill, there are fields of ripening grain, cows and a few houses.

I love animals. A strange quirk of mine, if no one else is around, is to make genuinely effective moo sounds at the cattle and see what their response is. Occasionally they’ll look at me baffled, wondering how a familiar sound came from an unfamiliar body, other times they’ll reply, but the usual reaction is they get excited and start charging across the field. I do not have food, but they likely think I do. Moo.

So I got that out my system, and jogged on down past a scenic area with some nice houses, then up and round past a drinks warehouse where I stopped to walk.

Around the corner from the warehouse is grassy scrubland with horses and sheep, and potato fields on the left. A few weeks back I tweeted about a goat (it is in fact a sheep..) and am going to quote myself:

Aug 4th – “Just back from a walk. Have you ever heard a goat whose balls haven’t dropped? You should.

I have passed the sheep that graze a grassy knoll many times and like the cow situation described above sometimes bleat at them. Either my bleat is more effective than my moo (this is where you question my sanity, I know…) or more realistic. Well a week ago when I tweeted, I mistook the sheep’s strange bleat for a lack of gravitational effect: of course I was joking.

As I was walking past the knoll, some of the dark-wooled sheep on the top of the hill started bleating. I replied. And I heard that strange bleat again. Only this time it was distant from the pack, and close to me. Peering up the banking, I tried to spot the sheep and wondered why it wasn’t with the posse (official farm slang for a group of sheep). It bleated again, and I climbed up a little to get a better view. The small sheep was by the fence and not really moving. Had it found a good patch of grass? It bleated once more and I figured it might be stuck, so I hopped the fence, and the sheep, maybe a year old was trapped, its head through a square piece of wire fencing.

Initially it was scared as I approached, pulling backwards trying to free itself. After a quick look at the fencing I gave he/she a little pat and then pulled the wire wider. Within a few seconds the sheep realised it was free and trotted off up the hill, before stopping to look back, probably wondering what the hell just happened. I doubt it would have been in that good a condition if it had been stuck for a week, so probably not the same goat. But it made the run/walk a bit better, more meaningful.

 

lion around 2

 

42 Comments

  1. I am doing the rounds again today and you’re ‘it’ (well, one of the its:)

    We have 140 contributions to date, and I am trying again to rope in as many contributors to the Poets for Peace challenge (in place until this the end of August). The many voices in response to this have been fantastic, and I’d love you to add yours (again, if applicable) if you can. Feel free to use an existing piece of writing or a new one asking for peace and/or about the troubled times in which we live.

    If you are interested, please leave your poem in the comments section of Neha’s blog and it will be added. https://forgottenmeadows.wordpress.com/2016/07/16/calling-all-poetscreative-minds-to-a-grand-collaboration-poets-for-peace/comment-page-5/#comment-19287

    Thank you –
    Your voice matters.

    We are so grateful to be part of this community where poets and creative minds from around the world stand together uniting for PEACE! This collaboration is open till August 31st and we hope to see more of you join in!
    – Neha

  2. I’m surprised so many of us do the speaking thing, lol. I’ll have to fess up to it too. So, I wonder what it is they think we’re saying when we talk to animals in their own language? Maybe you were saying the equivalent to “mmmm food” (maybe they have difficulty with our F and D sounds, ha ha ha, all this time they could have been trying to speak English!) or something equally interesting to cows. Fab job with the little sheep! That’s so cool. I’m quite sure if he could he’d say “thank ewe”.

    1. I have stumbled upon a secret society…well not an organisation…of animal talkers lol
      And thats a great point. What if the sounds I make are distress calls? Or worse and more dangerous…mating calls.
      Nice pun on the end 😄

      1. lol. Perhaps we should be called the Dolittles? Heh, I do little most weekends so it might apply to me anyway. Mating calls! I didn’t even think of that one! Ha ha ha! That’s actually kind of scary…

  3. The bit I enjoyed in your recounting of a fine tale is that you didn’t take a selfie and leave the poor thing to rot. For that you deserve huge things in life…if you did, don’t tell me…and jog on lol.

    1. Cheers. Funny you mention that, that exact thought occured to me after I freed the sheep, how many would have turned it into a pictorial. I never run with my phone but that take footage first mentality is really messed up in a lot if videos and pictures I see. Lots of parents laughing as their kids get hurt, but who cares, its on camera!!!

      1. Good for you. Nothing like a kiddie being burnt by a fallen candle caused by the cute cat’s tail if it gets you 50 quid..hilarious. I hark back to the baby dolphin drying out on a beach and by the time they’d passed it round for selfies, it had shrivelled up…only on earth , ay?

  4. This is just too funny and true. Last time I visited Ireland, I found myself bleating at sheep and being proud of how realistic my bleat was! Thanks for making me remember happier times.

  5. Oh, my hero!! 🙂 And I guess it was not an easy thing to do letting the sheep run being a lion and all? 😉
    And you´re not the only one having this strange compulsion to talk with animals 😉 I´ve been told numerous times that my sheep and goat imitations are priceless 😀 Have a great weekend! x

  6. I remember on a farm property a friend and I decided to round up some sheep – holy sheep they run fast!
    between the three of us we trapped them in the corner of fencing where their timid nature gave out and it was our turn to bail. Thank god for the fence!

      1. You don’t sound crazy. I think it’s cute and if I were alone with some cows, I think I’d moo at them too. And your animal noises saved one! So that’s great!

      1. 😀 hahahahaha… yes, and your powersuit includes green wellies, flannel shirt and long-johns which give you the power to not only speak to animals but you can maybe turn into one of them in the event of danger!

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