When you live in the countryside, being neighborly sometimes means stepping out of your comfort zone. It means helping out in some unusual situations not found in, shall we say, a more urban environment. This calls for an open mind and a willingness to jump into some strange circumstances.
One sunny afternoon, I drove around a corner to find a huge steer standing right in the middle of the road. Now, even though it was a country road, the speed limit was 45, and that happened to be a rather blind corner. Naturally, I couldn’t just leave him there; a disaster waiting to happen. It didn’t matter that I had on my prettiest summer dress and heels on my way to a baby shower.
There was no one else around, and being a good, neighborly country gal, I jumped into action. But once I stepped outside the relative safety of my little pick-up truck, I realized this might not end too well! There was no time to be indecisive, that steer was headed right my way and blocking the road, so I bravely started walking up the only driveway in sight, with Mr. Steer hot on my high heels. He seemed to be a friendly sort of fellow, so I just kept up a steady pace, calling him to follow in what I hoped was my best steer wrangling voice, and nervously looking over my shoulder for signs of flared nostrils, lowered head and ground pawing. Once I climbed the little hill to the top of the driveway, I could see where he had slipped right out of the unlatched gate. I knocked on the door of the residence with no answer, so I just walked over to the gate with my newfound friend and he was only too happy to go back inside to be with his buddies. I did leave a note on the door to let the folks know they had an escapee in their midst.
I’m not the only one who comes across a situation that needs a helping hand. Not too long ago, I was driving home along our narrow, winding mountain road and had to stop behind my neighbor’s vehicle while she rescued a runaway horse in the middle of the road. As I watched, her little daughter searched the trunk for something to tie around the horse’s neck while Mother held the halter-less horse by the mane. All the little girl could come up with was a jacket, but that was put to good use by tying the arms around the horse’s neck. There’s no lacking of ingenuity when it comes to being neighborly. Off they went, little girl leading the stray along by the coat sleeve, Mother alongside, back to his home, and all was right with the world once more.
That brings me to the most recent incident in a long line of roadside attractions. I was on my way to the grocery store and had just turned the corner onto the road towards town. I was so glad that I took that corner slow because just as I drove past the first house, a frantic hen ran right out in front of me, followed by a tiny, black and white, long-haired dog.
My concern for what might happen if another car came along, forced me to stop. As I got out of my truck and thought of what I could do, a young Mother carrying a baby ran towards me. “Oh, please help me catch my chicken,” she pleaded. “I’ve been trying to catch it all morning!” So, like the good country neighbor I am, I went into chicken-catching mode and together we rounded up that wayward bird with the help of one tiny dog. By the time she scooped the poor thing up, it was out of breath and so was I. She offered to let me pet the chicken, asking, “Isn’t she so soft?” to which I agreed, and then she was off to the other side of the road, baby and chicken in hand.
It was then that the question sprang to mind, “Why did the chicken cross the road?” And I knew the answer finally! “To get to the other side, of course!” Wouldn’t you run across the road if you had a Llapso Apso chasing you?
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Wednesday Wit and Wisdom
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