Dave the Reluctant Cowboy’s Last Rodeo
On the first of December, The Reluctant Cowboy headed off into the sunset. We follow his trail after his early adventures and onto some more, always more for a man who came to known as The Legend.
Dave the Reluctant Cowboy’s Last Rodeo
by Jules de Jongh
Season 2 Episode 47
[opening theme music and strapline]
Nanny Bea: I’m so pleased you made it, my neighbour Jules will be here with a story any…
Nanny Bea: minute now.
Nanny Bea: Who could that be? Friend or foe I wonder? Hello, who is it?
Jules: Hello Nanny Bea, it’s your neighbour Jules with a story.
Nanny Bea: Friend indeed, come in dear, we’ve been expecting you.
Jules: Thank you Nanny Bea. I’ve brought you a tale today of a most extraordinary man, the ultimate optimist who had a soft heart and a hard head. Are you ready for a story?
Nanny Bea: Oh, yes please.
Jules: Okay then, Dave the Reluctant Cowboy’s Last Rodeo, adapted for radio
The reluctant cowboy rode his last rodeo on December 1st, 2021. It’s hard to imagine but some folks don’t know his story so it’s about time we put that straight. Let us rewind to the beginning of his time on the circuit. David, who preferred not to be called Dave, ran away from wild horses and into the navy, funny thing he was stationed in LeMoore with no sign of water for a hundred miles or more. This sailor nowhere near the sea spent his private time rolling around the skating rink until he met himself a long legged spinner with ever changing hair. They spun all the way to the city of the angles, stopping just in time so as not to fall into the sea. A dizzy place that angel city, full of all kinds of folks who twirled or swirled or even hurled themselves there all to make their dreams come true. David was dreaming of stars too, but unlike the rest of the new recruits, he was dreaming of the great big, ball of fire, glowing in the night time sky sort of stars. He climbed aboard a new kind of ship, once again not heading towards the sea but rather to outer space but I’m getting ahead of myself.
David would be most disappointed if I didn’t tell you about the two little creatures that anchored him. Rosebud and Butterball, two little fairies that popped into life after David kissed his long legged spinner once, then kissed her twice. Rosebud was a feisty fairy forever at David’s side. She would ride with him on his motorbike all day long and argue with him all the night. This was a sport of sort for David. Didn’t matter what he was arguing about so long as he was arguing.
It was David’s arguing and asking, he was always asking and it usually started with ‘why’. ‘Why do you do it that way? Why don’t you do it like this?’ All that questioning got him noticed first at that space place. He started there just putting bits in boxes but it wasn’t long until the bosses started thinking, ‘Yeah, why do we do it this way and not like that?’ Well it only made sense to ask the man who’d done the asking and bing, bang, bong, he was part of the team making ships to go halfway to the stars, to the moon in fact. Apparently his fingerprints are still up there now if you care to take a look.
When Rosebud and Butterball got bigger, David scooped them up with the long legged spinner and rolled them out of the city and back to the valley of raisins and goat ropers. Admittedly I’ve nevered roped a goat but some have and still do. It wasn’t long until Butterball grew out of his name. He was very huggable and most loveable with little to say and lots to do. Even though he was quiet he was no wallfairy, why he could kick a ball all the way to the moon and back. David wasn’t quite so good at the kicking but he was great at telling others how to kick from the sidelines.
David explored this valley from the sky to the earth. In the sky he liked to let the plane fall fast enough to hit zero gravity, guess he was trying to recapture his space adventures. Most of his passengers enjoyed this trick but not the cat in the travel bag. On the earth he’d race around and around it, dragging his leg along the ground, breaking records and breaking bones. Dirty business is motorcross, thankfully Rosebud was on hand to pick up the pieces and peel off the boots.
The Japanese liked his motor cycling, the mechanical side actually. They begged him to come to this foreign land and show them how to build bikes but he couldn’t understand them so stayed in the valley he’d come to know.
Not to say he wasn’t up for a new adventure, he lived life on the edge, didn’t even know the word safe, that was until he started making them. Great big slabs of steel broken and bent to submission.
One day he grew tired of playing with safes and wanted to climb new heights, all the way up to the high sierras where the air is thin and the canyons are deep. He went there, same as so many in the past, in search of gold, solid gold. He dug and he panned, he mined and he blasted but the real treasure he found in those purple mountain’s majesty, was a pixie in the woods. She may be small, but she’s mighty and she took hold of David’s hand and walked the rest of the trail with him. They flew around the planet, raced across the lakes and snowmobiled through the trees but their greatest adventure was frolecking with all the fairies, great and grand, they had produced. Somehow that woodland pixie even managed to get David to fight fires instead of arguments, well most of the time. The last years were the best years for the reluctant cowboy. He fought the good fight to the very end surrounded by a posse of admirers he’d collected along the way. Loved by so many, it’s no wonder people call him, ‘The Legend’.
Nanny Bea: Why thank you Jules. The Legend, is this the one who was generous to a fault, laughed like Spongebob and, and shared steak with his dog?
Jules: Why yes it is!
Nanny Bea: Well then I caught sight of him just last month in our village, now where was he?
Jules: Hitting a little ball across a grass so green?
Nanny Bea: No, it was more (whoosh)
Jules: Oh, surfing the wind across a lake?
Nanny Bea: No but yes, but no actually. There was wind, plenty of it but he was falling in it or through it, I’m not certain of the specifics just that he was jumping out of a plane and into the air.
Jules: Well it could’ve been any of those, you know The Legend never sat still. I’m told if you listen really carefully, you can hear his footsteps running around in heaven.
Nanny Bea: Oh, I’ll send him a message in my prayers, to keep it down when I’m sleeping.
Jules: While you’re at it, send him my love, all of it, for always.
Nanny Bea: Of course dear. Will you be back next week for more Tales and Tea.
Jules: Yes I will.
Thomas: Go to NannyBea.com
Jules: Go there to find out about all our stories including the first story all about how Dave became the reluctant cowboy. See you next week for more Tales and Tea.
[Be on the Show jingle]
Mr Announcer: This has been a Toad in the Hole production for NannyBea.com.