Last week our grandchildren came to visit their grandparents that live ‘in the real country’ and attend Vacation Bible School. We took them to the Bat Cave where they got to drive across a river, see deer, armadillos, zebras and, of course, millions of bats. They even got to see a white racer snake (like the one in the Snake Master movie) eat two bats! We took them out to the family ranch and they got to sleep in the house that their great-great-great-great grandfather built. (Wow! He was really great!) They went on a walk and saw a dead armadillo and they each got to pick out a set of deer horns (left by the hunters) to take back home – and probably to school for show-and-tell. Grandma helped them bake a cake and grandpa helped them make a bug collection. (We have the coolest bugs in Mason – scorpions and gigantic grasshoppers.) We live near the water tower and by the end of the week they could both spell M A S O N and thought it was just about the funnest place they’d ever been. We took them to a dinosaur movie at the library and a horse movie at the Lutheran church. We took them to a cattle auction at the stockyards. Wow! There were lots of cows and bulls and real cowboys and a man that could talk ‘faster than a rocket’. For over an hour they were reasonably quiet and fairly still (since we told them how the men bought cows by making the smallest movement) – they did NOT want to buy a cow. A boy, younger than they are, showed up with a Fischer-Price farm and they all started to play together up in the bleachers. Which was good. They had auctioned off all the reasonably healthy cattle and as the children played happily and oblivious to the world around them, the men opened the gate and started pulling, kicking, poking and prodding a cow along as it crawled into the ring. It never stood up. It literally crawled all the way around the show area to the scale – with some “encouragement” from the men working the sale. It was disturbing – for me – and I am grateful that that little boy showed up and distracted my grandchildren so they don’t still see that cow struggling across the ground every time they think of their experience in M A S O N.