I hope I never lose my sense of wonder. If that makes me naive, then so be it.

Wednesday, 7 May 2008

not again

Another chicken has ... well, issues. The correct word for it is prolapse, and basically part of her vent (where the eggs come out) has inverted so that what's supposed to be inside is somewhat exposed. It's the same fate that befell Chaos last summer, and we all know what happened to her (just for cross-referencing's sake, it was in June 2007, somewhere around the second week). On the bright side, the girls noticed poor Cheeky's situation before the chickens did and so she still has her tail feathers intact. She's living in isolation now.

I like Cheeky. She's a survivor, the one who got attacked by a raccoon and lived to tell the tale. The one who has walked with a limp ever since and looked at the other hens through eyes that seemed narrowed with contempt that they hadn't faced the dangers that she had. She reminds me of the stock character of films set by the sea, the grizzled old sailor with the patch and pegleg, who nobody listens to until our young hero realizes that he has the clue to the whole mystery. And the camera zooms in on his weathered face as he squints appraisingly, nods briefly as if to show he's seen something that satisfies his search, then begins in a raspy voice: "It was away back, me lad, in the summer of '07. Me and the crew had just settled into our bunks, when in came the 'coon... nigh about ten feet high, he was, eyes blazing... " You know how it goes.

I know, they're destined for the freezer, but I wanted the quick one-way trip, not long, drawn-out living out of the sun because the fellow chickens who should sympathize with your plight will instead attack you.

Can I be a farmer? Do I have the guts (no pun intended) for it? Even at the hobby farm level?

On the Farmers Market front, that's looking good though will require a shift in plans as the guy I was talking to thinks that they're full on the veggie-growers-only front. But, since I had also mentioned grapevine wreaths, he wondered "what else you do" as if we were fellow farmers who had a long list of possibilities. I was pleased, but a bit at a loss. Then he said, "preserves?" Now, that we can do. R and I had a little talk about it and she's game to work with me to make pickles, jellies, salsas and the like. It won't be quite what we were imagining, but it's a start and as the summer goes on we may add some other things, veggies included, to our market table.

At least jam and veggies don't cluck at you and make you feel guilty for picking them.

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