Veracity and vigour

A weekly family column for the 100 Mile Free Press

You know the season is changing when the tire pressure on all four of your tires is suddenly low. This weekend we did more travelling as there was yet another wedding to attend. Although, comparatively speaking that’s apparently still relatively few, as some of our friends are committed to a whopping nine weddings.

Our kid is becoming a fairly seasoned traveller at this point. Somehow managing to, at least on the way back, sleep the entire way. Meanwhile, his vocabulary is still improving. Everything from an excavator to the push mower is either a “truck” or a “bike.” During the trip, we also discovered that he and we have different understandings of some of the words he uses.

For example, his definition of outside seems to differ from what the average person might believe it to mean. We stayed with some friends who live in an apartment complex. He would bang on the doors yelling “Outside! Outside!” in a way that was somewhat vaguely reminiscent of Al Pacino yelling “Attica! Attica!” in Dog Day Afternoon. Once he was outside on the bacony, to him nothing seemed to have changed.

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He beamed it straight to the top of the stairs going down from the balcony and continued his chant. “Outside! Outside!”

When he had successfully descended the stairs, he went straight to the gate in the small backyard. His chant continued. “Outside! Outside!”

I guess the side effect of growing up on a ranch is that “outside” actually means the great outdoors, as no such chants were heard when he was walking on the riverbank in Kamloops.

However, he has a chant other than “Outside! Outside!” that he really seems to have taken on as the song of his people.

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We were out for a walk and he started going “Moo! Moo!” when he got wind there might be cows in the vicinity. For the entire duration, the cows were in vision, they were around half a kilometre to a kilometre away. Now usually at that kind of distance, the cows would be pretty indifferent at someone “mooing” once or twice but he wasn’t going to be deterred by that. Despite the evening temperature starting to drop, he kept his chant going for what was probably half an hour. After some time, due to his veracity and vigour, his moos started to be returned.

Soon even some of the calves started running to their moms. Seemingly, at one year old, while strapped in a harness, with no discernable tools and from a long ways away, he already managed to herd the cows; that’s quite the cattle rancher already.

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