Friday, April 12, 2013

Before Coffee

It's not all pony rides and tulips in spring on Under Mountain Rd, especially today.

This morning, about 6 am we headed out for morning chores. Within minutes, the wind was whipping so hard it could take your breath right out of your lungs with it. It's never pleasant when you expect rain but get the winds here instead- we've written about it before and today was just extraordinary.

We moved the rabbits out of the wind in between some pine trees, and put an extra layer of tarp around them to keep out the weather. The round bales got new tie downs, which within moments ripped back out. We let the tarp flutter and fly while we raced out into the field in the truck to tend to the meat chickens.

Ever try to stake down a para-glider in 50mph winds? No? That's kind of what it was like trying to get the chicken tractor secured. While we were wrestling, the pvc pipe that stabilizes the whole unit snapped. So then the tarp that serves as the roof to the pen was free to pull and push and generally move in any direction but the one we needed it to.

We ran back down to the barn, to grab more tools and supplies. I crawled into the chicken pen to attempt to add extra stability back with screws, posts anything- but the wind was relentless. With no success. So then it was back to the barn to throw the cap back on the truck, and rescue the chickens from their now broken cell. After we laid shaving in the bed of the truck, secured the cap and the truck gate we then had to catch 85 tiny terrified chickens. While we were doing this, the 10 ft pen pulled entirely out of the ground and hit me in the face. Less than ideal.

Once the birds were rescued, dry and safe in their new temporary housing, I dragged the pen behind the barn for safe keeping, out of the wind, and to be reinforced in the morning.

Covered in mud, and chicken shit, but with 85 now much more contented chicks, we finished feeding the sheep, watering the rabbits, covering the hay, and tarping the seedlings we had hardening off outside.

It was 8 am, and we hadn't had coffee yet. The day hasn't even started yet.

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