(Title: In the Bleak Midwinter)
Honestly, I wanted to gather the cheepers in my arms this morning and reassure them -- this too, this cloud-filled period in your lives, it shall pass, my dear ones! But they're not huggable. Unlike so many chickens that modern folk get for their back yards, these guys are spooked and they're forever chasing us adoringly (or, in search of food, the cynic would say), only to retreat if they get too close.
I kept the lights on in the farmhouse all day long.
It took a mighty large set of hours to complete my visa application (remember? I mentioned it yesterday) -- all ten documents! -- but I pushed myself and by early afternoon I was ready to set out (to mail the blasted set of papers).
(Do you have the music playing?!)
Much later, I drop in on my daughter to help her with one thing or another. It is hard to leave. Watching the cats play with ribbon is absolutely delightful!
And of course, watching her, especially as she moves to show me something on the tree is riveting! (As of today, three weeks short of delivery, her baby becomes "full term.")
At the farmette, I get the coop ready for the night. I fill the cheeper dishes so they'll have food when they wake in the morning. The very last cheeper act is one that I save for Ed. Most nights, our girls prefer to fly up on the fence and fall asleep there. Ed comes with a flashlight, scoops them up and nudges them up into their bed and breakfast.
When they're groggy with sleep, the hens do not protest the human touch. Their dreams (of worms? of digging up my garden come spring?) have carried them elsewhere, to a place without fear.
It is a good way to end the day -- for them, for us.