Monday, August 24, 2009

Sean Not Yet of the Dead

I know i said i would show beads this time, but i don't have any new photos this afternoon, but i have been meaning to write a chicken story:

A broody hen's pile of eggs were overdue to hatch, and two chicks had already died half out of the shells, so my SIL decided it would be best to collect the eggs and dispose of them properly before they got too rotten and the dogs discovered them. She put them in a box and brought them up to the porch so that she wouldn't forget to deal with them when she could. Later that day, my 15 year old niece (let's call her Angie) passed the box and thought she heard a peeping coming from inside. She carefully examined each egg until she found the one that was being opened by the chick within.

Angie brought the egg into the house and set it on the kitchen table and was midwife to the slowly emerging chick. It was cold and weak and needed a little help. Once it was free of shell Angie dried it and warmed it in her hand. By evening she was encouraging the little newborn to eat by tapping her fingernail on the table where she'd strewn a bit of chicken feed. Before bed she set the chick up in a box with a heating pad under a layer of newspaper.

In the morning she was dismayed to find the chick had somehow wedged itself underneath the heating pad. Angie feared she had cooked her chick; it wasn't looking very good. But again she gave it serious TLC, giving it a little water now and then, and it recovered. That afternoon Angie put the little chick in the chicken house with Fuzzy, an odd fluffy white chicken that had never had any chicks of her own, hoping Fuzzy would adopt it.

When Angie checked on the chick in the morning, she found it laying dejectedly in a corner. Again it was cold and helpless. Angie held it beneath the heat lamp and massaged it gently until it regained strength enough to peck at some feed. Fuzzy payed more attention to it now, as did a runty rooster with unusually short legs who was never able to compete with the big rooster in the flock, and therefore never had his own hens and chicks to herd around the yard. The little makeshift family of oddballs seemed to be gelling!

The next morning, after a long search, Angie found her poor cold and limp chick half under the water tray. Again she carefully warmed and dried it and massaged it back to life. And again, by evening, Warm and Fuzzy and Sean (named for the zombie movie) were a funny little family unit. And that's the way they remained. And my niece seriously needs to consider a career in resurrection, or at least "healing".

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