So this afternoon I was out enjoying the waning of the day...the chickens had been fed and were wandering contentedly about the yard...my daughter was playing happily with the bubbles I was blowing.
one of the young chickens darts across the yard over by the coop in
what was clearly the furtive "I've got a really cool goodie" dash with
three other birds in hot pursuit. Problem is, I haven't handed out
anything and it was clearly a large, tasty something that this
chicken had in his beak. Off I go to give chase, wondering what the
heck they've gotten into NOW. As I join the chicken parade and we all
double-time it in circles around the yard, the Tasty Thing is looking
more and more like...a fish.
A smallish fish, to be sure...
Wondering how in the Hell a fish has made it into my landlocked suburban yard, I get serious about getting Tasty Thing away
from a very determined bird. By now the rest of the chickens have
wisely given up the chase since Phoenix has it, and the Head Hen (me) is obviously showing
waaaay too much interest in Tasty Thing.
Except now Tasty Thing is actually looking kinda like a human finger...! A decrepit and rotting finger, but still very fingerlike nonetheless.
this point I pick up my daughter's toy shovel, intent on getting Horrid
Tasty Thing OUT of my pet's beak. Meanwhile, my husband, who
throughout this entire time has been on the roof working on the air
conditioner and has had a ringside seat to this fiasco, is shouting,
"What is it? What IS it?!"
"I dunno!" I yell back, brandishing
the toy shovel at Phoenix, who has by now taken refuge under the
patio table. NOW here comes my 4 year old daughter to 'help', saints
preserve us. I make one last, desperate, blind lunge at the chicken
under the table and am rewarded with a loud squawk. To my relief the
offended bird runs out from under the other side of the table, sans
Horrid Tasty Thing. Oh goodie, now I get to play with it.
"Jesus!" I involuntarily yell when I finally get a good look at it.
"What IS IT?!" Again from the roof, sounding anguished and disturbed.
Ugh, necessity dictates that I now look closely at Horrid Tasty Thing,
unwillingly assisted by a half-hearted prod from a handy nearby stick.
it's a SNAKE!" I call up to the roof. Actually it's just the head and
an inch or two of neck/body and judging by the many beak holes in it,
is obviously a discarded snack from the local crows...double ugh...
"Where in the Hell did they get a snake?!" from above in disbelief.
don't know, but I've learned that where there's one, there's more. By
the way, my brain whispers to me...where's the REST of Horrid Tasty
Thing? Away to the coop I fly, searching for more bits and pieces. To
my relief I don't find any, but this is also worrisome since I now
wonder if my preschooler will be next to produce a grisly offering. I
return to further inspect the decapitated monster, and decide that what
it really is, is a REALLY BIG lizard. Great. Lizards we have in
abundance and I welcome them, although I much prefer them alive. Much
That poor chicken never did get Horrid Tasty Thing
returned to him, but I did slip him a piece of pizza crust to help sooth
any ruffled feathers.
Ahh, another sleepy day in suburbia...