My name is Dot and I live on Mr. Wilson’s dairy farm on the lush plateau above Natures Valley. Well, actually I have two plastic name clips on my ears that read Dot, so all the really pompous Jerseys in the herd call me Dottie because I am a little crazy and something of a vagabond. Some tourists that visit our farm stall take pictures of me and call me a lovely Nguni. The problem with being a designer African Nguni cow is that you might end up as a skin on a white wall in a fancy apartment overlooking the Elba River in Hamburg. At least I am not called Spottie like the farm’s irritating Jack Russel. But, to be honest, I sometimes get tired of standing in my own dung in a long queue, to then have my teats plucked at. One day, I escaped from the fields and headed south, on a long journey. Getting past Knysna was difficult and I had to keep on high ground above the town. In my rather bovine view of things I saw what human greed and development have done to this little, once quaint coastal town. Now monster trucks rumble through the main street and the place is clogged up with traffic and tourists. Near Mossel Bay, a herd of Herefords asked me whether I thought I was re-enacting the folk tale of Huberta the Hippo, who once travelled from Natal down to the Cape. I ignored them, because I am not fat and blubbery like a hippo and in any case, hippos have this disgusting habit of using their tails to flap their excrement all over the place. Along the coast past Gouritzmond the landscape got really bleak, kak and grey, ominous dark clouds were patching together overhead. That night, whilst sleeping on the dark desolate veld, I had a nightmare. I saw other dotted type cows glaring down on me with hateful thoughts and grunts. It was a surreal colourless world, devoid of green and happiness. Two days later, Mr. Wilson, found me and took me back to my luscious fields and obnoxious Jersey friends. The patches of cow dung still streaked all over his pants was comforting and sharing the back of the bakkie with an irritation called Spottie made me hum a country song.

African Nguni cattle stand along a country road between the coastal villages of Gouritzmond and Stilbaai of the Cape South Coast. The storm clouds of a cold front approaches from a south-westerly direction.

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