Today was a real rollercoaster of emotions. We made an arrest on the case - our second. The first was immediate upon discovering the body. This finally meant we believed we were ready to release the body for burial. It's...hard. There aren't many places in the UK that still bury bodies in communal pauper's graves. Some boroughs of London do. I think that might be where that child ends up. None of the relatives seemed in a position to do much else.
All we can do is put them in touch with as many support networks and charities as we know of.
Another case where the law may have been served, but no one feels much better about it.
Anyway... enough of being down.
There was a great call for The Cow in the Pond story that Sally mentioned. How she knows about it I don't know - she was probably still in primary school. Or school, anyway.
There was a cow. There was a pond. There was a cow in a pond, in the middle of a London park. There was a crowd of worried onlookers. All the onlookers were worried enough to not actually do anything themselves, but to call for help. From a London Bobby. Because we obviously do a course on bovine water rescues.
Who was the lucky London Bobby to be called to the pond? Yeah, me. Along with all the jokes about me being from the country, spending half my life with my arm up a cow's bum, all of that.
Well, to be honest, the cow looked reasonably content. It was eating pondweed. But it must have been fairly cold, because it was early spring.
Between us, we tried splashing things, throwing things, shouting, waving...the cow pretty much ignored us. So then my sergeant volunteered me to wade in to secure a rope around the cow so we could pull it out.
And yes, my uniform was pretty precious to me, and no one would have thanked me if I'd destroyed it, so I stripped down to my boxers - to the apparent joy of the crowds. And started a very bloody cold journey into the pond.
The pond, as ponds are want to do, harboured a very very muddy bottom. Really far muddier than expected. And if I didn't keep moving I could feel it sucking onto my feet, trapping me.
When I got far enough I started more trying to swim a bit, to keep myself from getting stuck.
The cow looked at me and kept chewing.
So by the time I reached it, I was shivering pretty hard, but I looped the rope around it and looked back to my supportive colleagues on dry land.
The cow looked very slightly chagrined.
It didn't move.
More people joined in. Like a tug o' war.
The cow didn't move.
They told me to give it a smack.
It didn't move.
And I was getting really, really cold.
They threw another rope in, so I looped that around the cow, too.
More people pulled.
It still didn't move.
I was trying to remember the stages of hypothermia.
Finally the farmer turned up. He made a noise. I'm not kidding - just a weird sort of noise. And the cow perked up, got a bit panicky when it was stuck at first, and then managed to move itself.
I seriously didn't think I was going to be so lucky.
So I did the only thing I could think of.
I got on the cow.
And the population of London was treated to the sight of a mostly-naked very wet Metropolitan Police Constable who was blue from the knees up, black with mud from the knees down, riding a cow out of a pond.
And yes, I was called 'Cowboy' for about the next 5 years. I think I prefer Lestallion.