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The Wonders of Chickens

From the first time I visited Uncle Franks farm when I was a tiny girl, I was fascinated with the odd looking 2 legged things that roamed the barnyard and make a myriad of sounds. They sat quietly in boxes in what was called the Chicken Barn where Aunt Mable would reach her large knuckled hands past their sharp beaks to miraculously remove an egg. It was magic. How did they get there? I knew them from the rows of snow white mounds we got from the grocery store, but these had colors like brown and I wondered if they tasted different?

It’s no small surprise that as soon as I had a backyard I purchased 2 itsy barred rock chickens. Spring and Spruffles were tame, sweet and came when I called them from under the bushes and trees out back as they landed gracefully on my shoulders. The ladies were picture perfect hens and made me happy... Until there was a knock at the door. The solemn faces of the 3 enforceres had scowls that informed me about section 427, line B, subset of A, that states I could not have chickens in this subdivision. “But, but, but,” I stammered, “They aren’t harming anyone and make no noise like a rooster.” “We have had a complaint,” they shared… “... and it’s against the rules!”

Rules, rules, I hate rules, I said under my breath and declared with ever fiber of my body that one day I would have as many chickens as I wanted. I scuffed and heard myself whisper, "They don’t know anything about what my soul longs for, needs and desires, Humpf!" So I called my sweet friend Verna who had a peacock farm and she gladly took them in. Later I would learn that her brother fell in love with them as they sat on his recliner while he watched football. Spring and Spruffles laid their first eggs that I didn’t get to see and Verna lovingly purchased a Barred Rock Rooster to expand her offerings. I missed them dearly.

The moral of the story is be careful what you declare in those moments of anger and desperation for it may come true. As I look out my bank of windows that overlooks old oak trees, a little duck pond I’ve dug, a Dwarf Nigerian Goat who resides on the picnic table while 5 dogs wrestle up the hill, my 60+ free range chickens are scattered about the 70 acres property I now call home. I’ll willingly admit I’ve over done it. Maybe it’s time to find more men with lazy-boys?

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