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hay bales It turns out, hay bales give considerably when you leap across them. Their shape compromises with the soles of your sneakers. I never scaled hay bales as a kid but doing so this weekend made me feel young again. More accessible than a tree, anyway.

Cows, it turns out, are quick. Their open faces and slow jaws belie a rather frightening agility, given their size. I heard a cow moo from a distance and thought, oh my God, it sounds like a cell phone, instead of the other way around.

We spent time during sunset on Saturday shooting arrows into the soft sides of hay bales, our target a piece scrap paper fished from the truck—the paper remained unpierced. He flew a remote helicopter toy-drone that took pictures of us. We moved locations, beside a show-off of a tree, and shot a rifle at a tennis ball we could barely see from our distance. Again, we missed. We turned the laser on and laughed at how unable we were to remain still. We agreed not to talk about our failures, made steak in cast iron skillets with goat cheese, and she put extra chocolate chips in the brownies she baked from a mix, which I drank with a glass of whole milk.

The next day, my legs itched from the hay and my peace-sign fingers ached because I’d been gripping too tightly. I laughed with her, saying, It’s a metaphor.