Cows – the gentle giants. Dogs – loyal than your own shadow. What could possibly go wrong? Everything, apparently. Such have been my encounters with these fellow beings that my body goes into a fight or flee mode as soon as I see one of these. My brain only registers the rope or the leash a second later. I have got my priorities right, and how.
Now ours is a country where cows and dogs (and cats.. and goats.. and.. well, you get the idea ) stake as much claim to the public roads as we do. They roam our streets in all grandeur, and we of course co-exist (yeah, that’s how we roll). My first ‘holy cow’ moment was when I was about eight or nine years old. For some reason, I was afraid of cows. Gentle giants they may be, but they still have horns, don’t they? That, and the way they ambled around the streets with their portly bodies sporting a devil-may-care-attitude reminded of some of those filmy goons with knives. Or something akin to that.
So, during the summer vacations, I used to go for drawing classes. It was a good ten minute walk from my house to the class. The good piece of advice that I used to get everyday before going to the class included instructions to stay clear of stray cows and dogs, amongst other things. This cemented the cow-goon image in my mind I guess. But then, running into a cow or a dog seemed unreal to me. That is, until it happened. One day, on the way to the class, my worst fears came true. I turned a corner and saw a cow, nothing less, sauntering along, on the same side of the road that I was. That day, I knew what ‘paralyzed with fear’ really meant. All I could manage to do then was to turn around. My heart was pounding fast, and my mind was creating vivid imageries and neither was helping my cause. For some reason, my feet remained rooted to the ground.
I don’t know what I was expecting to happen. A few agonising seconds later, I felt something lightly nudge my back. That was the trigger I needed. Like a loaded spring I jumped and let out a shriek. That alerted the people nearby, who, till then were oblivious to me and my fear induced paralysis. One guy gently guided me into his shop and let my nerves calm down. Of course I wouldn’t forget his face, almost on the verge of exploding with laughter. That he knew my parents very well didn’t help either. The cow just mooed and moved on; I am sure I saw a smirk on its face too. After a few minutes, I resumed my walk back, with shaking feet and a shaken heart.
Years have gone by and the terror of the cow was gradually forgotten. I have gotten wiser too. I know there’s no need to be afraid of a cow.. you know..provided there’s a rope and someone at the other end of the rope. And if a cow is on the same side of the road as you are, just cross the road – trust me, it works. Sometimes the cow also crosses the road – just keep crossing back and forth until you pass the cow – this is a tried and tested method too. Amusement for the cow, relief for you, and a hilarious comedy for the passer bys.
So much for the bovine tales. Oh, I’ve got some canine tales too. More on that in the next post. Ciao!
[Image courtesy: Original image of the cows courtesy of mensatic.]