Day 50 – Averting A Canal Cowtastrophy

Last night it was more apparent than ever that we don’t need a TV when we’ve got entertainment galore on the cut! I recently posted about our new cow visitors in the field opposite our boat bubble. I’m not sure if said cattle are to human voices, craving company, or just too lazy to walk to the other end of the field for a drink from the water trough provided by the farmer. Whatever the reasoning, we’ve watched them jostling amongst themselves for the best ‘canal drinking’ spot since then. The barbed wire wasn’t cutting anything – in fact, they appeared to enjoy scratching themselves on it. No deterrent there then!

We’ve all said one of them will fall in soon. Last night, as our baked potatoes were cooking on the brazier, it happened. Not one cow but two! We suspect the second slippage was due to a poor attempt at giving the first moral support to the first, and ended up needing it instead. These creatures are surely not the most intelligent, but their eyes look pleadingly at you and they really seem to care about each other. More on that to come …

Boaters To The Rescue

Once we’d all gazed in horror at the sight of two cows in the canal, we formulated a hasty plan. Not a lot of formulating to be fair – Plum jumped on his bike and headed to the farm, Kim jumped on a bike too and ripped her trousers so gave up on that idea, I did a Google Maps search (as a ‘Google Guru’!) and searched for farm nearby and called the number to explain what had happened. The helpful woman said it was a farm of theirs and they’d get in touch with the farmer. Plum meanwhile had arrived at the farm and knocked loudly, eventually finding someone. The phone call had come in and they were preparing to make a rescue attempt.

With Plum returned, and the farmer and his mate at the cows side, we offered to take the boats across to try and ‘herd’ the cows towards them. Of course the cows couldn’t haul themselves out even if they wanted to. It’s a known fact that falling into a canal is made even more dangerous by the fact that the sides are high and it’s nigh-on impossible to get out. Especially when you’re soaking wet.

The cows had worn away the barbed wire fencing over the past few days and created a trough-like area to lick up the decidedly dodgy dirty water. Realising there was no hope in hell of the cows coming out without help, the farmer went off to get equipment. At this stage, I stopped taking photos, and instead started a live video on the NB Areandare Facebook page. That video is over 46 minutes long. It took that time to get the spotted cow out, using a pelvic winch. Oh my goodness. It was touch and go. We thought we may be having a beef barbecue instead of milk.

Here’s a few of Barry’s shots …

Once the second cow was forcibly extracted, it was amazing to watch a dozen or so of her mates running over to see how she was. They licked her and snuggled into her as if they were just so pleased she’d made it out alive. It was so sweet.

Heidi’s (badges on board and pirate) Facebook post was a classic, and I’ve got her permission to share it here:

What a day! Two cows fell in the canal – one after the other splish splash splosh!! They couldn’t get out after trying so hard bless em and some shouts of encouragement from us boaters. So after a phone call to farmer Giles he rushed down to try and entice Gertie and Daisy back onto dry land! Not a bleeding chance… Daisy stayed quite close to where she dived in and just ate the grass from t’other side without a care in the world so she was back on dry land quite quickly, but bloody Gertie decided to go on a right adventure so we had to get the boats out to block her passage and stop her heading off into the unknown – well …. that’s where it got hilarious 😂😂 Barry trying to block her going one way and Plum the other (she got past Plum 5 times – he will never make a goalie) 😂 but he always got her back… anyway after a while, Plum and farmer Giles managed to get a rope around Gertie who was very tired by this time and with a whoop on farmer Giles’s tractor – out she came! All the other cows came to kiss her and check she was ok – they have now all buggered off to get their teats squeezed”

Recurrence Prevention Tactics

This morning the farmer and another mate were up early mending the fence, putting the barbed wire back on, adding fence poles, and best of all erecting an electric fence. The cows were let back into the paddock this afternoon, and it’s as if they know not to come near. They’re all now lying on the opposite side and haven’t ventured close to the canal again.

Barry had a chat with the farmer across the canal, asking how the cows were. He said it didn’t seem to do any lasting harm – and they all gave more milk than usual last night so he was happy!

A Complete Change of Subject …

A few days ago Pip and Mick, from NB Oleanna, told me about a local company (Nantwich Veg Boxes) that deliver fresh fruit and vegetable boxes. They’d already tried them out and had a box delivered to the bridge where we had our Off Licence delivery. Pip said if I wanted to order a box, they were collecting one today. So I did. A mixed fruit and veg one for £12. Awesome. All sourced locally. Thanks guys!

Headache Resolved Thankfully …

I’m feeling a lot better today, so no symptoms reported to the COVID-19 Symptom Tracker. Barry is fine too. Kim, on the other hand, is feeling a little unwell. Hopefully, it’s something and nothing …

On the website they report that there’s now “… 3,001,113 members of the public supporting the NHS and scientists in the UK. Together we can get out of lockdown safely and beat the disease.”

If you’re not signed up yet and you live in the UK, USA or Sweden, please do so, because of what they say above.

Hopefully this evening will be a little calmer on the cut. Earlier today I saw the most magnificent flower full moon from our bedroom portal. What fantastic weather we’re having again; thank you Mother Nature 😉

13 thoughts on “Day 50 – Averting A Canal Cowtastrophy

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  4. Oh my! Gertie and Daisy did have an adventure, didn’t they? 😀 … glad it all ended well, and how wonderful that the other lasses made sure they were OK 🙂

    • They sure did! Bless them for being so caring. They’re all keeping well away from the canal now. They may be daft but it seems like they’ve learned a lesson …

  5. We saw a sheep fall in a couple of years ago on the offside. So we stopped and our daughter and friend ran over a bridge to the other side to try and help. Of course the sheep took fright and swam across to our side, so my son and I had to try and lift it out by the wool.

    A wet sheep is extremely heavy!

    We eventually got it out and put it in the well deck so we could take it back across to it’s own paddock and let it go. Mission accomplished.

    We have also done the run to a nearby farmhouse to report a cow in the canal. It must have swum at least 1/2k on it’s own before eventually getting out on it’s own accord in a more shallow spot, with all it’s mates watching it. Over the years I think it’s 2 sheep and 2 cows total we have seen swimming.

    A lightly different cow story. Moored on the Macclesfield one evening we spent 45 minutes watching a farmer trying to herd about a dozen cows through the gate. He tried over and over, each time they got near the gate they would run back past him to the other end of the paddock, and he would start again.

    So he got a friend, and dog, to help him. Same thing. Finally they ended up with 4 guys and 3 dogs there and after almost an hour got them through. I don’t know who was more tired, the farmers, the cows or the dogs.

    Ourselves and a few other boaters had a lovely evening sitting on the roof watching the action, better than a good movie.

  6. Glad you liked your box. Ours is heavily fruit biased this week which is fine, but I now need to find some more veggies. Next week I think I’ll just get a vegetable box again, we’ll still be eating the fruit.
    Keep your box as they like to reuse them if possible.
    Did you get the email regarding the Covid Symptom Tracker changing their name? It’s now Covid Symptom Study as they don’t track people movements and are wanting to avoid confusion with the track and trace things that are to come.

    • I did I love it! How do we re-use the box? Do we take it to the drop-off point next time we have an order being delivered? Barry was going to keep his tools in it, I’d much rather it was used again for the purpose it was designed for!
      I possibly did get an email, haven’t had a chance to look at personal emails today as I’ve been doing paid work 😉
      I’ll have a look tomorrow …

      • Our box had a touch of Carmina Burama about it! We just handed our box back this morning when they delivered the new one. They put something up on their Facebook page the other week about how it’s hard for them to get enough boxes as demand is do great.

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