A few days ago, I went camping with a few friends, including my husband, Jon. We went to the island of 大島(Oshima). On the ferry to the island, I even saw two dolphins jump out of the water! The trip was off to a good start. We hiked over the top of about a dozen mountains to get to the opposite side of the mountain so we could see a windmill and lighthouse. Neither of them are things I particularly care about seeing, and both were surprisingly disappointing. However, the joy was in the journey, right, right? My bag carrying the tent, food, and so forth got pretty heavy around the fifth hour of tromping up and down mountains. The views were spectacular and it was great to be surrounded by trees and birds.
The sun started going down just as we noticed some cows rounding the side of a mountain. That explains the cow splats on the trail. I was wondering about that.
We walked a fair ways away from the cows to find a camp site and started gathering wood for a fire. By the time we got around the setting up our tent it was already almost dark. We pooled our food and had a delicious dinner of salad, sausage, and so forth. Just as Jon is putting the chicken wings on the grill…I hear a creepy noise coming from the darkness. I dismissed it as my imagination…until I heard it again, it was definitely an animal and it was definitely coming closer. I said, “Hey, someone shine a flashlight over there.” Someone obliged and lit up one black cow only ten feet away from me. It also lit up about seven other cows facing us. I thought, “Hey, they’re just cows, right?” I shouted at them and clapped my hands a bit to get them to go away.
The lead cow tossed its head, stamped its feet and as it was getting worked up, the light from the flashlight glinted off its nose ring. The surrounding lady cows stood calmly watching us. At that point, I stated edging towards the fence behind our campsite. It was a decorative fence, not made for keeping the cows out, but it was better than nothing. “I think we should go behind the fence guys. You don’t have to, but I’m going to.” I was going to let this bull trample my tent, eat the food, whatever he wanted. At that point, a much braver (and perhaps more experienced) friend shouted louder than I had, clapped his hands louder than I had, and called the bull’s bluff. The cows ran off into the night and I came back from behind the fence. The rest of the trip occurred without incident.