It was an eventful weekend, all centering on the chickens and their habitat. To begin with, Margaret, our oldest and tamest hen, got sick. Normally, when Dennis opens up the hen house in the morning, Margaret follows him outside, waits for him to open the gate, marches into the chicken yard, and starts eating the kitchen scraps Dennis dumps on the ground. Meanwhile, all the other hens are waiting for Dennis to open their little door, but Margaret has already eaten the choicest offerings.
Saturday, however, Margaret did not follow her normal routine, but stayed in the chicken house, not only when Dennis opened the door, but also all day long, huddled on the roost. When Dennis looked her over he found that her comb was turning black – not a sign of health in a chicken. Sunday she stayed in as well, but crouched on the floor.
Sunday, yesterday, was also the day a powerful cold front moved through, blowing like the dickens out of the north. When Dennis and I went to buy some groceries I had to hold onto his arm as we crossed the parking lot, lest the wind blow me over. (Dennis is far sturdier of this union.)
Back home I looked out the kitchen window and noticed that a walnut tree had blown down in the chicken yard, taking with it a large branch of an adjacent tree, and squashing the twelve-foot-high fence.
At times like this we call on Pam the Intrepid, who owns a chain saw and knows how to use it. Evening was upon us, so it was too late to remedy the situation, but Pam promised to come this morning.
It took Pam and Dennis just one hour to clean up the mess. First, Pam cut the branches hanging over the fence. Dennis loaded the cut pieces into the wheelbarrow and trundled them to the wood pile.
Then Pam went inside the chicken yard to cut up the main trunk.
While she cut up the trunk, Dennis set to repairing the fence.
He had to patch the wire and reattach it to the fence post.
At the end, the fence was repaired and there was a heap of new seasoned fire wood to be split.
As well as a large pile of kindling for fire starting.
All did not end well. I’m sorry to report that Margaret passed away overnight. We will miss her.
Copyright 2015 by Shirley Domer