I’ve been wanting to write something lately, but I didn’t know what to write about. The obvious choice is to write about my break from school and the holidays, but everyone is doing that and I like to pretend I’m special and different, so I’m avoiding writing about the holidays.
Instead, I’ll tell you about the time I was chased by a cow.
I was six-years-old, I think, maybe seven, and I was in Mexico. We were there for the summer and my family decided that they wanted to collect some of the corn from the crops my grandpa owned on the outskirts of town. I remember thinking it was a long walk there—now the trip takes about ten minutes by foot—and I hated it because most of it was uphill on hard dirt and grassy hills that messed up my rockin’ Skechers.
The fields were huge and spread out over about a quarter of a mile if you stood in the middle of it. The stalks were tall and towered over me, although I was six or seven so I gather they must have only been about five feet or so. And my family was immersed in it all, picking corn off of the stalks and putting them into burlap bags. I think we were making tamales with them later for my cousin’s baptism.
Anyway, at one point my grandma says that she heard a cow and that we should start heading out of the field. I was instantly terrified. Who the hell knew what cows did, I didn’t even know what kind of creatures they were. (They are livestock). All I knew was that I did not want to run into one and someone needed to get me out of that field. The older family members told the kids to calm down and make their way to the fence as quickly and quietly as possible. I guess they were taking precautions because these cows could be rogue considering one of them bit right through its rope and was wandering around my grandpa’s field eating our corn.
So, with fear in my heart, I started towards the direction of the fence sort of blindly. Those damn corn stalks blocked my view so I was pretty much stumbling towards the sound of traffic. Thankfully, my grandmother caught up with me and took my hand, leading me towards the fence at a quick pace. Somewhere close by, my oldest sister, Cynthia, let out the most terrifying and shrill scream I had ever heard.
And then we were running.
I could hear the cow trampling through the field, knocking down stalks, breathing hard as it ran in the direction my sister was running. The sound of the chaos became progressively louder until I realized my sister was running right towards my grandma and me. When she saw me, instinct kicked in and she grabbed my other hand, ripping me away from my grandma in a direction diagonal from where we were running before. We were running up the hypotenuse of death. And I screamed because I saw the damned cow just fifteen feet behind us. It had a fury in its eyes that still haunts me to this day.
We ran for our lives feeling like the cow was breathing down our necks and the long grass beneath our feet was trying to wrap around our ankles so we could fall and be trampled to death. I don’t think I’ve ever run as fast as I ran that fateful day in Mexico. Then, as if God heard me praying for a swift and painless end, the fence appeared before us. Cynthia practically launched me into it, sending me sprawling through the middle planks until I was rolling into the dirt road, gasping for breath, and crying out in terror as she struggled to get over the top plank of the fence.
She got over it just as the cow emerged from the stalks, huffing angrily through its nostrils and braying like a freaking demon. My grandma picked me up and pulled me away from the fence, and it was all over.
Later I found out it was a calf and Cynthia and I only ran about fifty feet, but I still don’t trust cows. Just like I don’t trust lightning, but that’s a story for another time.