The Thieving Fog

21 Jan

Today’s frost was so thick it looked like snow, and the fog crept in around the cottage, gradually obliterating the world. The fields, which in the summer had been home to the curious cattle at the top of my blog, now looked like this.

The cattle themselves had long disappeared, and I’ve avoided thinking too hard about where they went. But today was the sort of day that brings thoughts of death and endings closer to the surface. The road my feet took me along has claimed the lives of many wildlife, and our dear rabbit Harvey. A car blasted its horn at me as it shot out of the fog and back into it. I was on the verge, but the driver couldn’t tell.

Farm buildings loomed suddenly into view. The farmyard was empty and silent. There were no shadows beyond the enveloping shadow of the fog itself, and everything was frozen rigid. But as I passed the final barn, I heard a muffled thump. I paused.

There it was again: thump, thump… scrape.

And silence.

I wondered if the farmer might be working in there. But it didn’t sound like someone hard at work. It was too erratic. I knew I shouldn’t, but curiosity got the better of me, and I crept towards the barn door.

Thump. Scrape.


I peered over the barn door, and here is what I saw:

They are the cows from the summer fields. And this is where they went.


12 Responses to “The Thieving Fog”

  1. Molly January 21, 2011 at 6:36 pm #

    Wonderful Pictures

  2. David January 21, 2011 at 6:54 pm #

    I love your writing style and how the photos fit so perfectly into it. The old *X-Files* fan in my also wants to comment on your summer cows: clearly, you have interrupted their efforts to rebuild their intergalactic space capsule—prepare for the Wrath of Moo!

    • Jigme Datse Rasku January 21, 2011 at 7:04 pm #

      That’s probably true, at least about the intergalactic space capsule.

      As for the writing, it’s brillig. Or something like that.


  3. Jigme Datse Rasku January 21, 2011 at 7:02 pm #

    Thump… scrape scrape scrape… thump.

  4. Debbie January 21, 2011 at 8:09 pm #

    Your prose took my breath away and the pictures are stunning. Thanks for sharing this journey!

    • Debbie January 21, 2011 at 8:10 pm #

      I love the looks on the cows faces! You have obviously interrupted a very private bovine meeting and confused the lot of them! (-:

      • Snailquake January 21, 2011 at 10:11 pm #

        Glad you enjoyed the read. And yes, the cows were rather taken aback, I think. Especially when I pointed the camera at them.

  5. SEF January 22, 2011 at 11:30 am #

    I’m not so sure they are the same cattle. These ones seem more uniformly coloured (with oddly pale eye-rings) than the ones which clustered around you before – and which adorn the top of this blog. They may also be steam-punk mechanical/cyber cattle dressed up in fur fabric instead of being biological clones, judging by the twin exhaust blasts coming from their noses.

    • Snailquake January 26, 2011 at 5:35 pm #

      They might indeed not be the same cattle. Really I need to check their tags to be sure. They do belong to the same farm, though, and there were some differently-coloured ones lurking in the background. The eye rings are, I think, to do with differences in contrast and colour saturation in the different photos.

      I’d like to think they are the same cattle, but further investigation would provide me with material for another blog entry…

      • SEF January 27, 2011 at 9:49 am #

        They also have very pale noses compared with the previous cattle you met.

        • Snailquake January 27, 2011 at 10:15 am #

          True… Maybe they’ve lost their sun tans?

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