It was still winter at the farm. The heifers had experienced the first snows of their lives. The first snow was pretty light around Christmas. Not really much to see then. The heifers wondered what it was, actually. They heard the man from the house call it snow – if not for that they really would not have known what to call it. The second snow was a big one! It came up quickly and covered the ground. The flakes were big and flat. There must have been visitors at the farm because several people came to give them treats the day of the big snow that they did not know.
There were also three new additions to the group of girls: Priscilla, Queenie and Rachel. They came to the farm after the second snow of the season. They were very standoffish. These heifers were also about the same size as Ophelia. So they were bigger than most of the girls. After their second day in the pasture, Ophelia took them aside and explained the rules. “Now listen up, ladies. This is the way it works around here. Every day one or more of the people from the big house come down here and give us treats. We like this. So you need to either be friendly and like them or you won’t be stayin’ here long. If you’re thinkin’ you won’t like bein’ friendly I suggest that you stay back from us that DO like it! Are we all on the same page?” Of course, Priscilla, who was the most outgoing of the three, quickly reassured Ophelia of her understanding and cooperation. “Ophelia, I am a bit shy but I will certainly try to overcome that to make the people from the house happy. And wow! We really get treats every day?” Her big brown eyes with the dark lashes twinkled and blinked in amazement at Ophelia. “Yes, we do. And we appreciate them every day!”
The other two heifers were still a bit unconvinced that they could actually trust the people from the house and Rachel voiced their concern in almost whispered, stuttering words “y-you mean y-you want u-us to-to, like, go u-u-up to them? L-l-let them p-pet u-us?” Queenie snorted and huffed as Rachel finished the question. Ophelia was quick to respond “Yes, we do. If you can’t do that then keep your distance from them. Only come up to the group when they are done putting out the treats and we’ve let them pet us and talk to us. Then you can come up and get your treats.” Queenie and Rachel huffed their agreement. Ophelia added “and if you are that scared, then talk to Lydia. She is not sure of the people either and she’s gotten over it so she can get treats first, too.”
The last snow fell but it was really not that much snow and it melted really quickly. The grass and the flowers had started to turn green. They finished off what would probably be their last bale of hay for the season. Then it was time to graze on the green grass of the pasture and laze in the sun in the afternoons.
One afternoon the lady from the house came to the pasture. She held an envelope in her hand. She was smiling a lot, too, and seemed to be more excited than usual. She put out the treats for the day and then she was petting the heifers and talking to them. When she got around to Matilda she gave the heifers the news – which was the cause for her excitement. “Matilda, we entered you in the Cheese Cowgirls competition and you won!! You get to go to California and train to be a Cheese Cowgirl. You’ll be in commercials and even some movies!” The heifers began to huff their excitement – but not too loudly because they didn’t want to scare the lady from the house. Of course, Heidi being the youngest she got a little more excited than the others and actually stood in the trough and voiced her excitement in a loud “MOOOOO!” The lady from the house just laughed and petted her and teased her for standing in the trough. Then the lady told Matilda “they are going to pick you up on Sunday for your trip. We’re all going to miss you! But get your bags packed and enjoy the next two days with the other heifers. We’re so proud of you!” Then the lady went back to the house for the day.
The next day the man from the first pasture and the boy from the house came to visit at treat time. They were saying how exciting it would be for Matilda and how proud they were. Of course, the heifers were gathered around Matilda – they didn’t want to miss one minute away from her before she left. They would chat and huff and then push each other around playing like little calves – though they were bigger now. Sunday the man from the first pasture and his son came to get Matilda. The lady from the house cried when she left the pasture because she knew she wouldn’t see Matilda again – except maybe in the commercials. But the lady seemed happy when she cried. The man from the first pasture and his son loaded Matilda up after all the heifers said their goodbyes and off she went to be a star!