After a week away in the sixties timeloop that is Cumbernauld, learning the skills of an ISO 9001:2000 lead auditor, it was down the motorway on Friday afternoon to Somerset. Arrived back in the land of scrumpy and cheese about ten o’clock, which made a journey time of under seven hours without doing anything that might have incurred the wrath of plod. The trick of a quick journey is to optimise the breaks, rather than the accelerator, so to speak.
Back up yesterday with the Queen of the Chooks and my own little brood of chickabiddies, the latter visiting The Chookery for the first time. Today has been bright and sunny and a good opportunity to check out the chooks and gather data on the geese. All the birds are well, although there has been a dearth of eggs in the chooks’ nesting boxes. Once again, we find that they have been laying inside the coop, which results in eggs going undiscovered for several days and getting chook-poop on them. Her Maj has a deft trick for these circumstances, which involves cleaning the eggs and not letting you guess whether you’ve received one of the nice nesting-box jobs or one of the jobby eggs, as it were. I take this as a sign that the chooks feel the shavings need to be changed and will head off to the argicultural merchants (and purveyors of puns to the community) tomorrow to seek to oblige them. The alternative is that laying inside the coop is a vice that is encouraged if eggs are left there, so another part of the plan will be to remove any eggs as soon as we find them to discourage the chooks.
Up to Oban to do some shopping – essentials like drinking chocolate and apple juice – the chickabiddies are fussy fowl. Back home to domestic duties and baked some bread, which went down well with the chickabiddies, probably because PTC strained every creative sinew to reproduce bread which could lurk unrecognised in a supermarket wrapper, rather than the chewy wholemeal with sunflower seeds that is the normal product of baking efforts at The Chookery. Still, the effort was worthwhile and there will have to be another baking session tomorrow to keep the bread-board busy.
The hen chickabiddies are finding the rural surroundings of the highlands a little strange and are arranging their plumage in the most urban stylie possible, ignoring the chill winds that whip around the unprotected kidneys of those foolish enough to sport hipster trousers in this climate. Cickabiddie “C” went out to find some signal for her mobile phone and was directed on a nice round trip on the local estate by some kind local, which took her on a four-mile walk around the loch as it was getting dark. Solid homing instinct brought her back in time for tea. Chickabiddies “K” and “A” (cock, or non-hen, chickabiddy) went off down the road to the loch and came back up along the river, so felt they had a good adventure on their own as well. They are placated about their strange rural surroundings by access to $ky television and endless supplies of “Friends” and “The Simpsons”, all of which serve the desired effect by suppressing all cerebral activity and give Her Maj and PTC a little peace and quiet.
Chickabiddy “K” requires some minor first aid, so I shall have to curtail these blogging activities for the day. She has managed to catch her ear between the heated ceramic plates of her hair-straightener and cause a small blister, which has started to bleed. How does one explain to these little ones the perils of vanity?