Tuesday, October 11, 2011


Internet is the new electricity.  I had NO idea how dependant I was on it until I didn't have any.  That ridiculous storm knocked the main tower sideways or something and couldn't be fixed until today.  It really couldn't have been worse timing as we missed a couple fresh chicken sales due to not being able to check our farm email account, but by today I was sort of almost getting used to it.  I suspect it would be something like if I had a cell phone and then suddenly didn't.  For the first couple days it seemed like EVERYthing I wanted to do required an internet connection but by today I had remembered how to use the telephone, turn real pages in my own cook books, write a cheque, listen to the radio for the weather and news, etc.  Amazing.

Anyway, of course while not having internet, I had what seemed like constant blog entries floating around in my head and now that I'm sitting here, nothing seems worthwhile posting.  So here's one I wrote the first morning after the two day storm.  Please keep in mind that the weather was insane.  Winds of 100km, rain, sleet, ice, hail, SNOW, more rain, more ice pellets.  Also keep in mind that we were planning on shipping these chickens TWO days after the storm.
But the chickens actually were fine.  I literally crawled in with them and they were actually cozy and completely wind and wet free.  How could I know that at 2am!? 

The title of the blog would have been " Those %$&*@ Chickens!"

"I wrote this mentally last night and had our house been a bit warmer (yes, that’s right I haven’t started the furnace yet) I would have snuck downstairs to type it up.   I hadn’t slept for a couple hours and knew that getting out of bed would be easier on a slumbering husband than the tossing, turning and sighing that I was currently perfecting, but it was just too damn cold (and we find out this morning that the furnace won’t start for some reason).  Here’s the sleep-interrupting conversation that was going on in my head, pretty much verbatim.

“Those *%#k*&$ chickens.  There are literally ice pellets hitting my window in sheets right now and those damn chickens are still out on pasture.  This can’t fall under the organic ‘humane conditions’ can it?  I know we turned the pens so that they’re sheltered and when we left them at 7 they were cuddled together looking fine, cozied up on the soft, dry pile of straw that I lovingly shook in amongst them, but it wasn’t ice pelleting then!  And the wind is stronger now than it’s EVER been!  Ugh!  Chickens.  Eff.  Here we are, going to ship them on Friday, I guess that’s tomorrow now, and there’s still another full day of this weather.  Great.
I keep trying to wake up Mark without him knowing I’m waking him.  I need some reassurance.  I know exactly what he’s going to say. He’ll say, “Oh gawd, they’re fine. The chickens are fine. They’re not frozen, they’re not dead.  And if they are, too late.  Go to sleep.” 
But what if it’s like that scene on Titanic where everyone huddles around the smallest chicken to save it from the cold and the ones on the outside die first?!  What if all that’s left is the smallest chickens!?  We’ve got people lining up on Friday afternoon in a parking lot in Charlottetown waiting for their prime Thanksgiving chicken and all we’ll have to offer is Tiny Tim of the meat kings.  Or not so meat king in this case...
Oh Lord, Sally, just go to bed.  Obviously Mark is not going to do anything tonight and you can’t do much on your own, so just go to sleep.

BUT LISTEN TO THAT ICE, RAIN and WIND!!!!!  It’s horrible! It’s a nightmare! 
‘Mark!  I can’t sleep. I’m stressed about those chickens.’
‘Snort, stir, sigh.  The chickens are fine. ‘
‘But you’ve been sleeping through the weather!  It’s a horrible night out there!’
Yawn. ‘The wind is blowing against the back of their pen.’
‘But if I’m cold here in my bed, in my house, on a sheltered lot, just think.....!!!’

The steady breath of a sleeping person is his response.
Oh man, 4:26...Thayne is going to be up soon.  Ugh.  I hate these chickens for stealing my sleep.  And tomorrow morning I’ll have to be up at another ungodly hour to load them in the crates to take to the abattoir.  Won’t that be fun.  Let’s just hope Mother Nature gets the worst of it out of her system by 5 a.m. tomorrow morning or she’ll have one ugly chicken catcher on her hands. 
Well, I guess at this point it’s true.  They’re either dead or fine. 

 So this morning at breakfast I said to Mark,

“When you get out there to do chores this morning, take a good look at the chickens and if they seem cold, I’ll help you move them inside and we’ll get a heat lamp on them.”
A look of loss-of-my-credibility washes across his face, but only for a second.

“They’re going to seem cold Sally.  If you want to move them, we can move them inside.”
Translation:  “Enough.  Let’s both pretend that I’m going to do that, because we know I’m not.”

As I write this, only a short time after this conversation I realize, now that THAT is a response rooted in caring patience, because it COULD have been an outright dismissal, rightly deserved.
Or just a really high tolerance.
Either way, I suspect that somewhere on Mark’s mental ‘ToDo’ list today is “Get the furnace going.” And “Avoid the house and have confident reassurances at the ready.”  "

Hope this finds you enjoying the fact that our seasons are JUST the right length, at least if you're in Atlantic Canada.  For the rest of you, our seasons are JUST the right length. NA na na NA na.  :)


1 comment:

  1. your reward will be in heaven when they check the roll and see how much you cared for your birds !!! hehehehe