Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Bossy our Guernsey Holstein Cow

Prior to our move to Oakland, we lived at the edge of town in Exeter in the rear of a house that my dad purchased for $250.

Dad partitioned off the front into an apartment and we rented it to a lady and her son. I believe the front apartment had the bathroom, and our family had a path to the alley where stood our outhouse. In those days, a Sears Catalog was the paper used for outhouse personal care.

When we moved to Oakland I had just celebrated my 5th birthday, so I know that everything I remember prior to that time, I had to be between 3 and 4 years old. A child can remember quite far back, with pieces here and there forgotten as they did not make much of an impression.

Thinking back, I remember that we could not keep Bossy, our cow at home because even though we lived on the edge of town, we were still within the city limits. Also Bossy made a lot of noise when she mooed and that disturbed the neighbors. She would let you know very loudly that it was time to take her milk.

Each morning my mother and I would walk a long ways, Mom carrying a clean bucket so she could milk old Bossy, and we would have milk for our day. The farmer, who kept Bossy for us, would milk our cow at night and keep the milk for his family.

One day in particular, Mother asked me if I would like to learn to milk our cow. Well it certainly did appear to be easy, so of course I said, “Yes, let me try.”

Mother showed me how to sit on the small stool and how to place my hands and fingers and then she said; “OK now it is your turn.”

I have been told that cows know who is a friend - - and who is a stranger, and somehow old Bossy shut down her milk supply and the faucets did not work for me.

That was the first and last time I ever tried to milk a cow.

Although I was born out in the country on my Grandparents ranch, I believe I am still a city gal and probably always will be, even when I reach that city of gold in the heavens.

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