Moo and Moo and the Little Calf Too
With a bump and a shudder and a wobble of the udder,
With a rocking and a rolling and a slip and a slide,
Moo and Moo and the little calf too began...their...ride.
When the Kaikoura earthquake struck in November last year two cows and a calf from a Clarence Valley farm in Marlborough were stranded on a grassy “island” platform when their paddock slid 80 metres. Their story, and their subsequent rescue by farmers, attracted worldwide interest.
Now they are the stars of a picture book written by Jane Millton, whose family owns the farm, and illustrated by Deborah Hinde who has form. She illustrated Cow Power about Cow No 569 who saved her farmer in a flood in Dannevirke in 2004 - and her farmer Kim Riley wrote that book (unfortunately now out of print).
Moo and Moo and the Little Calf Too is a colourful, rhyming piece of Kiwiana – and a cheerful take on a frightening event.
During the massive 7.8M earthquake that hit New Zealand in November 2016 two cows and a calf were stranded on a two-metre high 'island' when their paddock slid and buckled 80 metres from its original position...
Sensibly they stayed put and were rescued by farmers a day or so later. This story attracted huge media attention locally and around the world...
It's an iconic story of bravery in the face of great adversity, and of helping others and protecting those around us. It's also emblematic of the laconic Kiwi sense of humour and the strength of the New Zealand spirit when faced with chaos and crisis. It's a light point in the midst of devastation.
Jane Millton farms at Clarence River near Kaikoura and when this drama unfolded on her farm, she wrote this great story about it.
Deborah Hinde is the illustrator of A Kiwi Night before Christmas as well as many other wonderful picture books for children.