A few days, maybe a week, went by. Then, quite early one morning, the call came. They wanted her on set in about an hour.
'On set' was about an hour away and we hadn't even eaten breakfast. Plus, Poco was in the pasture and would have to be rounded up and loaded on the trailer.
But in record time, we were on our way to the base camp of the secluded location where they were shooting that day. As we pulled in, several harried-looking people greeted us, helped unload the cow, and quickly switched her nylon halter for a leather one.
The animal wrangler took hold of her halter and they started up the road. The odd thing was that Poco was pulling him along as if she know just where she was going.
We were told that we'd get a call in a couple of weeks when they were done shooting and we could come get pick her up then. (We were not invited to meet Mr. Quinn.)
Imagine our surprise when a day later we got a call. 'Come get your cow -- this isn't working out.'
Back we went, imagining the worst. But there was Poco, serenely chewing her cud in the ramshackle little stall they had for her at base camp. What happened to the two to three weeks? we wanted to know.
Well, they said, they had trouble keeping her down at base camp when she wasn't needed up on the set. Seems like she kept breaking loose and running back up the road to where they were shooting.
And even worse, our cow was a scene stealer. Her big moment was a scene where she was being milked while Aidan Quinn and his leading lady were having an argument of sorts. Evidently, rather than standing there cow-like and inconspicuous as the argument went on, Poco kept swiveling her head back and forth between the two stars as they spoke -- ludicrously like a fan at a tennis match..
As I imagine it, Aidan Quinn, in a fit of temperament, stamped his foot and said, 'Either the cow goes or I'm outta here!'
Poco's still in the movie though -- for about thirty seconds in the milking scene. Don't blink or you'll miss her.
(Apart from the cow, the movie is well worth watching for the beautiful scenery and the music! If you're wondering what the Appalachian dialect sounds like, it's done pretty well here -- most especially with the young girl who sings the old ballads.
She was coached by my friend Sheila Kay Adams, seventh generation ballad singer. Shelia's also in the movie, playing the banjo and kicking a drunk off the stage in the dance scene.)