Snapshot 2 - Don’t Let Go
It was move in day at the Hardin county fair my sophomore year of highschool. I had brought a shorthorn heifer and my shop project from ag class to show that week. I had unloaded my shop project first in the FFA building where I got many comments from different people wanting to buy it after fair was over. It was a bench created out of an old Ford tailgate and recycled barn siding for a seat.
Once I had got my shop project put in the FFA building, it was time to unload my heifer and my brother Nole’s heifer off the trailer and into the beef barn at the fair for the week. Now I had worked with this heifer at home and was pretty confident that I could control her well and lead her where ever I wanted. So my heifer was behind my brother’s heifer so I let him go first to exit off the trailer. After he went, I untied my heifer and started off of the trailer. Just as I was exiting off the trailer with my heifer, a little kid, who couldn’t have been much older than 6 or 7 years old, started screaming “MOMMY, MOMMY LOOK IT’S A COW!” This spooked my heifer. With me being as bull headed as I am and having been told from a young age to “don’t let go, just hold on tight” by my dad so I held on tight. That’s where I probably made my biggest mistake. I held on tight to the lead rope of my heifer and she got me down, dragging me a hundred yards before I finally let go so I didn’t crash my head into the side of the horse barn as my heifer started running through the barn.
By this time I was getting comments from various people like; “man you must be tough as nails” or “what did you bring that cursed wild animal to the fair for it’s gonna kill someone!” I got up off the ground where I had landed from letting go of my heifer and got my brother so we could go back and catch her.
When we got around to the other side of the horse barn we spotted my heifer standing in the grass between the fence and the track that goes in front of the grandstands. Nole said “I’m going to go out on the track so she can’t jump the barrier and onto the track. You come up behind her and grab her lead rope.”
I told Nole “When I get ahold of that rope, I want you to come over and get on the end of that rope so there is two of us on there to lead her back to the beef barn.”
Nole replied “Better yet why don’t I get another rope and put it on the other side of the halter so each of us are one side of her.” I said “That’s fine. Just make it quick.”So I stood there watching my heifer, both of us panting like dogs, waiting for Nole to get back. When Nole did get back we cornered her in the chain link fence and he put his rope on so we could start back to the beef barn with her and get her tied up for the night. When we were about halfway back she started getting jumpy and some older guys came and got on the ropes with my brother and I and said, “Don’t worry. We got your back” for this I was grateful. With the extra help we got my heifer back to the barn for the night and got her tied up. Once she was tied up I started inspecting myself for anything broken or anything that needed medical attention. Aside from having major road rash on my sides and back I was pretty much ok. After checking myself out my brother came up and asked “did you learn anything today?” To which I responded “Yeah, when you’re getting dragged by a cow, let go of the damn ROPE!” He laughed and said “Yep you just wouldn’t let go.”