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Thursday, June 12, 2008

Dodge Power Wagon

It's been a long time coming, but we've finally found our power wagon! He has a coat of many colors, parts in his cab, and he's going to come totally apart and become a new being, but the important thing is, he's arrived!

I've wanted one since I was a kid. My grandpa had one on the ranch, and my dad had one when I was growing up.

Speaking of growing up, I'm not certain how old my brother and I were the day my dad told us to go get "Skogen" and bring her and her new calf home. We were still milking cows then for the milk for the house so we weren't very old. I was a year older than my brother.

We took off for the cow pasture in the old power wagon. If you know power wagons, they don't go very fast, especially when they are in four wheel drive. I'm sure we had it in four wheel drive, as it was calving season, and probably a muddy spring. I was driving.

Skogen was a holstein cow, named after the cattle buyer we'd bought her from. She was notoriously rank when she calved. She'd spent many years having her baby taken from her and the very thought of coming in from the pasture in the spring was enough to put her on the fight.

My dad didn't think twice about sending us after the calf, in spite of our young age. And when he said, "go get that cow and her calf", we didn't question it, and we didn't stand there looking stupid, or hesitate, or pretend we didn't know what he meant....we just jumped in the old power wagon and took off.

We got out to the pasture and found Skogen and her new baby. We got hold of the calf before it took off running and together, we managed to throw the calf in the back of the truck. By this time, the cow was getting pretty mad. I ran around to get inside the truck and my brother held tight to the calf in the back.

I put the wagon in first gear and started off, shifting as fast as I could. The calf began to bellar and Skogen heard him. She ran up to the back of the power wagon and tried to jump in. She succeeded with her front feet, but couldn't get her hind hooves in because I was going just as fast as she was, and I was picking up speed, albeit, slowly...

The cow was mad, she couldn't touch my brother, but she was blowing snot all over him. He'd hit her in the nose, then he'd bang the back of the cab, while he yelled at the top of his voice, "Get this thing outta here!"

I had the giggles to the point I could barely drive for when I looked back in the mirror, I could see that cow's hind legs paddling along trying to keep up. When I looked out the back window, I could see her blowing and bellering at my brother.

We went quite a ways before Skogen dropped off the back of the truck. We didn't need to worry about her following us up to the barn, which was a couple miles away. She was right behind that truck, her full bag swinging and swaying as she ran.

So you can see why I wanted another power wagon, they bring back memories!
Donna Ridgway