Saturday, January 31, 2015


Alternate post title: "good news/bad news," or -- "how to waste your day without really trying."

I was up with the cheepers. I'm thinking --  lovely sunrise! It's going to be a grand day!


I open the coop -- oops, low on water. Let me get some refills here. I come back. Three chickens hover, expecting a treat.

Wait now. Three? Where is the fourth? Where is our egg laying, non-molting, ever enthusiastic Butter??

I search for her. The barn is big, the sunrise is beautiful...


No Butter.

I throw them their favorite snack -- Butter is always the first in line for that!


My worst fears realized. Ed was late locking them in. There are coyotes in the area. Damn!

Ed, we lost a chicken.
Seriously? You're not teasing?
Seriously. I looked everywhere. Butter is gone.
Any Butter remains?
No. Nothing.

We talk for a bit about whether to replace her, come spring. I'm against it. Ed reminds me how cool it is to have them stick together in their pack of four.

I go down to fix breakfast. Ed goes to the barn to look for other tell tale signs of a massacre.

He comes back quickly, with a grin: all four chickens in place, accounted for!


I'm not even going to speculate what happened this morning. Did she spend the night huddled elsewhere? Was she roosting in a hidden spot? Was she in some post traumatic stupor, so that she missed my morning calls? We'll never know. We are not likely to ever fully understand the workings of a chicken mind.


To continue with the report of good news from the day: Apple has (finally) released it's update to the new operating system! My computer no longer drops the Internet!

Back to the not so hot:

I talk to Ed about replacing my car. Generously, he offers to trade me his 2000 Hyundai. He'll take the 93 Escort and continue to work on it. In the alternative, I say to him, I could buy a newer Yaris (the smallest of the Toyota cars).

And now comes the craigslist search. And the calls. And the weighing of the possibilities. (There are many used Yaris cars in Florida. Do I want to go down there and drive one back? I do not. But the cars here are getting rusty. Some of them. And when there is a dealer, there is always an unpleasant discussion to be had. No, my limit is $5000! For a newer Yaris? Ha ha ha ha ha! But we have an excellent vehicle available at...  No! Leave me alone!  How about buying directly from an owner? So many of them are dishonest. Or stubborn. I'm hating this, nearly as much as Ed is hating the idea of me looking for a newer car!)

After many frustrating ineffective, stupefying hours engaged in The Search, after rejecting a drive to Gurnee, Lynwood, Menasha and Tampa, I tell Ed that I'm tempted by a Yaris sold by a dealer right here in Madison. It has an enormous amount of miles on it (190,000), but beggars can't be fussy. To me, at 2008, it is almost as new as a baby's bottom, though perhaps not as squeaky clean.

We go out to look.

Here you see my 93 Escort next to the 08 Yaris.


The price is greatly reduced. It drives beautifully. We almost finalize a deal. We get stuck on the last $500. We walk out. They don't call us back. I'm relieved.

The car project remains stalled.

In the early evening, I pop in to see Snowdrop. It would be entirely hoggish of me to linger. Her aunt (on the dad's side) has traveled great distances to see little Snowdrop and I stay just long enough to say hello and to touch Snowdrop's soft little cheek.

Her aunt is wonderfully talented -- she can answer all my questions about her fascinating current residence far far away and have Goldie the cat hover by her ankles (I would have tripped, or kicked Goldie by accident) and rock Snowdrop, all in one fell swoop.


Little Snowdrop is one lucky girl!


Tomorrow, her aunt takes off for her place of work far far away, a snowstorm will finally inch closer to our farmette land and if all goes well, I will be hosting Snowdrop for the evening. Ah, but that's tomorrow. Tonight, the skies are still calm, the chickens are safe and the cars are as they were yesterday and probably as they will remain for many days to come.

And maybe that's not such a bad thing.