My hands are cut, scratched and bruised from hammer misses, hardware cloth and the drill vibration. I pray no real carpenters ever inspect my work closely. The walls are mostly level but not straight. Our mantra is beat it to fit and paint it to match.
The hens live in our garage at night on on the screened in porch all day. Technically I have fourteen birds. Practically I have three flocks. The ten original birds have the run of the porch floor where the food, water, dirt bath and toys are ("toys" are a brush pile they like to pick through). The black and white hens I rescued from the shelter live on top of the nursery cage and jump to the floor for food and drinks when the other ten are dozing. Otherwise the big girls chase and peck them which sends them sqawking back to the cage roof. The two Buff Orpingtons, my youngest birds, live inside the cage where they are safe from the shelter birds who pecked one of them bloody two weeks ago. I tried putting them together but they hurt her again. She threw a fit about being put inside so this is the best solution I can find. How they are ever going to share the big coop is anybody's guess so for now, I keep them segregated for safety's sake.
Josephine rules the roost. She's the biggest bird, a Rhode Island Red. She's first to the food bowl and gets her pick of roosting spots. The next nine take their cues from her. They even bully the little ones on her behalf. She's been the boss since they were babies. I thumped her with the broom handle when she was especially mean to one of the newbies, hoping she'd feel pecked. But it was to no useful end. Their ways are ancient and embedded, not likely to flex for my pleasure.
So I watch them segregate and bully and submit and hide and every once in awhile, flaunt a little courage. Occasionally I'm tempted to imagine what it's like being God watching us do our same day in, day out routines of small minded self segregation. It's less amusing in humans I expect, given the destruction and suffering it produces. Not to mention the heartbreak. We are children after all, not chickens. For Love we exist, not entertainment, which is the good news. For Love our ways are not embedded but flexible, chosen and changeable. I pray this find day finds you choosing joy and contentment, gratitude and faith. ~ peace & prayers, pastor annette
PS - Bill Coverdale just called to tell me his Aunt Ruth Coverdale Robison passed away on Sunday. She was her father's aunt (I think), the last of her generation of Coverdales. Her services are on Thursday. I know Bill would appreciate a card.
515 W. 6th Street