I am sure you've heard the term "wild goose chase" and while I'm quite certain you've never actually encountered a wild goose chase, I'm sure you can imagine it quite ridiculous.
Well, my friends, I have just been victim to a "wild chicken chase", which is, in fact, equally as ridiculous.
My previous post about the most scrumptious Brown Butter Pumpkin Cupcakes was the setting for what was about to transpire. I was setting up to bake the second batch of these delightful treats when it dawned on me that we only had one egg left in the fridge. No big deal, I'm the Farmer's Wife, remember? Just go out back and grab an egg (I'm not kidding, that's actually what we do here).
Easier said than done.
After spending at least 5 minutes trying to unlatch the door to the chicken coop, I finally realized I was attempting to turn it the wrong way. Ok, problem #1 solved. Got the door open and pandemonium ensued. Ducks and chickens went running everywhere! At first I was able to contain them, scaring them back into the coop, but then just as one would run back in, three more would run out.
I'm not making this stuff up. It was the definition of ridiculous. I knew the Farmer would not be happy. These were his prized meat birds. But then, I saw a duck got out. Not a duck! So my priority shifted, if nothing could be saved, I had to at least fight for the duck. I was able to catch him and shove him back under the door. And there were a few smaller chickens that were easy to corner and grab. The larger meat birds-that's a different story. These things turn every which way. Just when you think you've got them cornered, they duck and run (pun intended) the other direction.
So, I got wise. I went and got the pet carrier and would grab them one by one and put them in the pet carrier-it was becoming too tiresome to catch them, open the door, shove them in, all while trying to make sure none of the others got out-after the pet carrier was full, I went to the side door and let them out. I had to do this three times!
Finally, with just one bird left, sweaty, defeated and so far beyond angry and frustrated that it isn't even funny, I decided I would give up. There was no way I could catch this last bird. It was a bantam which is smaller than an average chicken, so it's quicker and harder to catch. He was just running up and back along the coop. So then I decided I could do it. Just think, be smarter than the chicken, right? I mean I am smarter than a chicken, aren't I? Don't answer that.
The coop sits next to the garden and the wire outer wall of the coop runs parallel to the fence that surrounds the garden. So there's only a small space between the two and the chicken was pretty much staying right in between. So I barricaded off the one side so that he couldn't run through. Then went around the other side. He ran into my trap - so far, so good - well, believe it or not, chickens can fly. While I was tripping over, the hose, bricks and other miscellaneous farm tools trying to catch this last chicken, he flew right over my barricade, which was clearly no challenge for him.
I chased him around the coop and he ran straight for the woods. I yelled, "I'm trying to help you! You'll die if you run in there." He didn't even look back. Stupid bird. So here I sit, with a broken nail, scraped leg, exhausted (it doesn't help that I'm 10 weeks pregnant and so much as getting dressed makes me exhausted) and I have nothing to show for it. Now I have to wait until the Farmer gets home to get my egg, and hope that he's not totally upset that there's a chicken missing. I think it was one of the full grown ones, one of the only ones that was laying. Ugh, oh well.
Until next time and hoping that none of you ever have to chase chickens because it really sucks,
-The Farmer's Wife