Read this earlier post if you’re curious about the title (Of Grit and Bone)
Monday evening of this week I had an encounter with a raccoon.
Back story: We have (4) laying hens. I separated one of them from the rest of the flock recently because they had started to peck on her. In case you’ve never been around chickens, they really do have a pecking order and they can be vicious. The chicken they were picking on is my personal favorite. She is a broody hen….(the impulse to sit on her eggs until they hatch.) That trait has all but disappeared from most chickens. As chicken breeds have been genetically manipulated and bred for specific traits (ie. fast growing for meat, or designed to lay lots of eggs, etc) one of the unintended consequences has been they have lost their motherly inclination… Things are not any better when it comes to the roosters… by and large, they have forgotten how to do their courting and mating rituals and become brutish….Historically, farm chickens would do courting and mating rituals (much like a prairie chicken or wild turkey).
It is really rather disturbing.
Anyway, I went out before dark to lock up the broody hen and there in the doorway to the hen-house, was a raccoon. It ran into the small area with my broody hen sitting on the perch, not three feet above. I’ve never heard such a scream, and I’ve been around plenty of raccoons over the years. It sounded almost demonic. Another (5) minutes and the hen would have been history. I ran back into the house to grab my 12 gauge, but by the time I returned, the raccoon had escaped into the bowels of the barn.
Thursday morning, I got sucked into the middle of a domestic dispute. Husband and wife were going at each other right in front of me.…and in an unguarded moment, I said something to the wife. She looked so broken and humiliated and said something about him doing this in front of me…
That was a mistake.
I know better….
Yesterday morning I wound up in the ER. Got nicked by my skill saw on my forearm. Could have been much worse. Forty five minutes and three staples later I was back in the saddle.
After my trip to the ER, I crawled into a 4 ft high attic to move loose, dusty insulation. Temperature was forecast to climb into the 90’s so wanted to get that part of the project done while it was still cool.
It took the better part of two hours…..reminded me of my days on the farm mowing bales of hay. You would be covered with dust and chaff…absolutely no air movement.
Good thing I love my job 🙂
This morning my siblings and I went out for breakfast with my parents. Dad celebrated his 85th birthday today. What a gift to still be able to hang out with both of my parents. I don’t take it for granted we get along. That even came up in passing while we talked. One of the branches of our family is relatively well off financially, but lots of interpersonal conflict. Before the old man died, he owned 7 farms. Take a 160 acres farm @ $8,000 an acre times (7)…you get the idea.
How was your week?
Describe it in 10 words or less. DM