Every evening follows the same routine during the quiet farming period.
I arrive home around 6.30pm to find the cats on the doorstep ready to be fed.
After a quick chat with the three bundles of fur; Snowy, Fluffy and Snowball, I enter the farmhouse kitchen with it’s sloping floor and leaking chimney, to find my husband cooking on the aga. Until the tea is on the table, I mark the mountain of work created by the “academic animals” I teach. Following the farmhouse feast, my hardworking husband washes up whilst I resume my position behind the marking mountain.
On this particular evening, I finished my work around 8.30pm. Entering the cold living room to snuggle in front of the glowing embers of the freshly lit fire, I asked, “Have the cats been fed?”
“No”, came the reply, so I left my place in front of the warm fire and headed out into the cold night, wearing my blue bobble hat and pink flowery wellies.
Having fed the three hungry moggies, I decided to spend some time watching the cows in the yard.
Now February is the start of the busy calving season for us so all seemed calm on this late January evening. I like to spend time talking to the animals and began to strike up a one way conversation with Blackie.
Half way through this unrequited dialogue, I noticed something in the corner of the yard. Climbing up the gate and onto the troughs to get a closer look, I could just make out a brownish object that looked alot like an alien. It certainly didn’t look like a calf as it had no eyes, however it was moving and I guessed this rhythmical movement was breathing. I leant over the top of the trough to get a closer look but even with my contact lenses in I couldn’t really make out what the object was.
Dismounting, I rushed back across the yard to the house and called my husband. Rushing up the stairs I yelled, “There’s something in the corner of the yard, I think it might be a calf although it doesn’t look like it!”
What I failed to mention was the fact that I really thought it looked like an alien.
We rushed back across the yard to investigate. My husband confirmed that it was indeed a calf, (which we later discovered was four weeks early) and not a premature alien!