The lovely Purple Fred has pointed out that in a fit of modesty, I failed to tell you yesterday about my courage in the face of a herd of rampaging wild animals.

Doing the cache Chocolate Box Cottage on Sunday, we had to cross a field with a herd of young bullocks in, animals of which we’re both a bit nervous: cattle won’t deliberately hurt you, unless they’re cows guarding small calves, or some species of bull, and even then they’d rather you just went away. But young cattle are quite capable of crushing a human in play, or just out of curiosity, and when you’re laying on the ground with a crushed ribcage it’s not much consolation to know they were only leaning against you to see what happened.

So anyway, we were crossing the field (National Trust property and open to the public), and the bullocks in a fit of curiosity were ambling closer and closer: PF, exhibiting great courage, told me to stay between her and them. I think this was also about the time she asked “If you die, can I keep the pullover?”.

Mark Wallington, in Five Hundred Mile Walkies1, describes arm-waving and shouting as a pretty effective anti-cattle technique, so I thought I’d try it. All but one shoo’ed as instructed, and he followed his mates when I added “AND YOU TOO! GO ON, BUGGER OFF!”. PF was impressed at my bravery in the face of danger…come to that, so was I. The direction in which they ran was a bit more of an issue, as they were now standing exactly where we wanted to go, and the clever one I’d just annoyed was stamping his foot at us and snorting.

We retreated to a safe distance to see if we could work out an alternative route, and by the time we’d decided we couldn’t, they’d moved on. So we found the cache (well, PF found it…just another reason why I love her), and we’re still in one piece (each). So that’s OK :-)

1 Incidentally, if by a staggering coincidence the person who borrowed my copy of Five Hundred Mile Walkies about six years ago is reading this…could I have it back please?

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