#21 Cow Pies
I imagine most of the world’s population has seen evidence of bovine bowel movements, I was raised a city child, and I only saw evidence of this spontaneous, splashing occurrence at our annual fall fair, the Pacific National Exhibition. As an adult, many years later driving the freeways, I found myself intrigued when alongside the road a bony bovine tail rose and with malodorous majesty, baked a steaming cow pie.
When I first roamed the Kaibab Pinyon-Juniper forest, I discovered Arizona ranch cattle apparently took the time to back up onto piles of rock, dry old prickly pear skeletons and fallen trees to deal with this necessity of life. Somehow, when I tried to envision a placid plodding cow or a short tempered bull, taking time to back their hind quarters three or four feet up into the air above rocks, clutter and cactus, it did not seem likely, yet there is was — the evidence - great dry brown whorls sitting atop piles of desert debris!
I pondered the pies for many months, hoping one day to catch a cow — flagrante delicto and preferably while I had paint brush in hand and canvas at the ready. Ah, what a creative masterpiece that would be!
As time passed I began to lose hope of ever seeing the curious occurrence.
One morning as G.B and I walked past a high, cow pie topped rock pile, I turned to him and risking his scorn asked, “G.B. look! See that rock pile? Why do the cows back up there to go to the bathroom?”
G.B. slowly turned toward me with a stunned angry look on his face.
“Charle, CHARLE, CHARLE! His anger and volume rose with each mention of my name, “HOW CAN ANYONE BE SO STUPID! he exploded. “WHAT THE HAYLL’S IT LIKE IN Y’ALL’S HEAD? IT’S PACK RATS — PACK RATS — PACK RATS!” he screamed at me. “They stash ever’ dang thang they can find on their nests — INCLUDING COW S- - -!”
G.B. stomped away from me grumbling as he went, “Now she’s stuck that sight into my head. Ever’ time I look at a dang cow now, I’ll see it bottom up — on a pack rat nest! DAMMIT!”