With the muck fortress at their disposal, it was not much of a challenge to pick up the stallions. And money was not much of a problem since money was still pouring in through the snake oil sales on e-bay. However it would soon run out. He had to quickly think of another way to fund his remaining adventures. He had seen how internet on mobile had helped him so much. So he could sense the need for the product in this world. And he would have absolute monopoly in this market. So he searched on the internet for best deals on mobile phones and invested money in buying 20-25 handsets and Vodafone internet connection packs for all of them.
They then reached the island of Diomedes. Santos led the stallions out to lure the mares. Harvi waited for him at the fortress. But hours passed by and there was no sign of Santos. Harvi wondered what had happened to him. So he decided to go himself and investigate.
He just took a few steps and the sight that greeted him made him furious. Santos had of course brought back the mares. The stallions and mares were gleefully cavorting with each other and Santos lay on the grass in a relaxed manner watching their love play intently as if it were midnight Masala on television. The lazy pervert!
“Santos, get the mares on board quickly. We have just one more day to get the cows from Geryon.”
Geryon turned out to be a grotesque freak with three heads and three pairs of hands. But it turned out appearances can be deceptive for he turned out to be quite an amiable fellow. He was quite frustrated with his job. It was upsetting his work life balance and giving him high blood pressure. So he was only too willing to let Harvi have the cows. But he had two conditions. First was that Harvi had to help him find another job and the second was that Harvi had to demonstrate competency in handling the cows.
The first condition was not much of a challenge as Harvi knew just the place to find jobs for monsters like Geryon: monster.com. He found multiple listing for freaks at circuses, hosts for reality shows and as mascots for sporting teams. Harvi helped Geryon prepare his resume and apply to all these jobs. He also gifted him one of the cell phones with a Vodafone internet connection to keep track of the employer responses and the interview schedules. He taught Geryon how to use Google calendar to keep track of his appointments. In the first task , he had far exceeded Geryon's expectations. There still remained the matter of the cows to be taken care of.
Harvi had to match the record set by Geryon in daily milk collections to demonstrate his competency in handling the cows. The key challenge here was that unlike the cows on Harvi’s world, these cows could think. So essentially Harvi was faced with the same problem Henry Ford was faced with many years back, “Why is it every time I ask for a pair of hands, they come with a brain attached?”
Each cow had her own need. No wonder Geyron needed so many heads and hands to handle them. Harvi did not have so many heads and hands but luckily he had multiple mobile phones with internet connections. He downloaded a linkin park album from iTunes on one of the phones for Daisy who loved music. He had to live stream a few episodes of ‘Just Dance’ on YouTube for Buttercup who loved dance. He had to look up cookery blogs to find a nice grass recipe for Violet. Rosy was unable to concentrate on her work unless she got constant updates on the cricket match.
Then there were other issues. Clover was generally feeling low on confidence. So he had to play Robin Sharma’s speech on YouTube to pep her up. Holly on the other hand just did not want to work. So downloaded a whip cracker app on his mobile phone and used that to scare her to keep her in line. Then Iris was being bothered by flies. So Harvi downloaded the fly repellent app and used that to keep the flies at bay.
Now that the basic needs were satisfied he needed to find ways to motivate them to the next level of performance in order to meet the targets set by Geryon. He set up a competition between the cows promising a date with the Cretan Bull for the top performer. That made them all scale up their performance. However competition had its own undesirable consequences as well. Lily was a typical trouble maker who was trying to undermine the other cows’ performance to stay ahead of the book. He had to identify and isolate her to keep her from de-motivating the others. Hazel and Lavender did not get along with each other and their constant bickering was creating a hostile atmosphere lowering team performance. So he had to keep them in stalls as far away from each other as possible.
By the time the day was done, Harvi was dog tired. This had been by far the toughest quest of all. He measured the milk collected for the day. He was still just short of the target set by Geryon. He quickly put in some water to make up for the deficit and he was good to go. Geryon was impressed with his performance and the cows joined the mares and stallions on the muck fortress. Harvi was all set to make it on time for his date with his old friend, the Greek king also known as the reptilian alien shape changer.
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Picture credit : Cows Picture