I live in an area where the standard quip is that we have three cows to every human. Most recognisable and the symbol of the Cantal are the Salers with their Harley Davidson horns and rich reddish brown coats. In fact the original Salers were black and you do occasionally see a raven coated throwback still. They are prized and revered and considered to be lucky. And indeed they are fortunate since you won’t find them going to slaughter in a hurry.
But this beauty is actually a Ferrondaise. There used to be far more of them but for reasons that they have so far failed to divulge to me (remember I speak like a Spanish cow not a French one) they dwindled. Now the great and good of the Auvergne are encouraging farmers to restock them. In our village we have an enchanting farmer who sings lilting songs to his Ferrondaise as he walks them between fields. The fact that he is missing several teeth does not make him self-conscious and he is happy to stop and pass the lisping time of day and share pearls of wisdom as his cattle casually amble up the main highway through the village. For my part, I don’t sing well though it doesn’t stop me from chirping, warbling and in particularly uninhibited moments positively yodelling which perhaps accounts for the look of disgust in this disgruntled beauty’s rolling eyes as we stopped to snap her. I offer her to you in response to the Daily Press prompt Eye Spy. Here are all the other fine offerings laid out for you to enjoy
PS: The title is Edward Lear. My mother-in-law lived in his house in Seymour St. London W1 for several years and he became ever more a part of the family tapestry as a result. His whimsy nonsense, delight in bending and stretching words to his pleasure and seemingly simple illustrations never fail to cheer me. This one goes thus:
There was an Old Man who said, ‘How
Shall I flee from that horrible cow?
I will sit on this stile,
And continue to smile,
Which may soften the heart of that cow.’
I did not sit on a style, nor did I try to soften her heart – I think she was a lost cause that afternoon though I don’t for a moment think she is horrible. But then I am not an Old Man ….