Last night Marc and I took the kids to dinner. Marc and Griffin wanted sushi so we went to a restaurant (Sushi half price Monday – Tuesday and Wednesday!) a few towns over. We got to the restaurant around 7:00.
A few minutes after we arrived I got a text from Logan. He had finished work, was anyone going to pick him up? I had forgotten that he needed a pickup. Yikes!
Everyone stayed at the table while I left to get Logan and come back.
40 minutes later I returned and the sushi still hadn’t been served although the girls had tucked into their meals. – “We’re going to be here for a long time, aren’t we?” They asked, as they pulled out their phones to start checking texts, tweets, and playing an online stacking game.
Logan and I ordered our meals, the sushi came. More sushi was ordered, by the time we left it was 9:00.
Driving home, I made one of those inane seasonal remarks like “I can’t believe how short the days have become” and then it hit me.
We had left our chickens outside. Granted they were in a penned in area but they were outside. In the dark. In a yard that has been plagued with predators. When we said we were going to go to dinner, it hadn’t occurred to me that we would be returning *3* hours later.
Oh no. Oh no. Oh no. Oh no.
I shouldn’t have gone to the restaurant. I should have suggested something closer. I should have told Marc and Griffin that it was really Thursday.
Oh no. Oh no. Oh no. Oh no.
The entire drive home I fretted about our chickens.
Oh they must be terrified. If a predator has gotten them I’ll never forgive myself. Those poor little things. Thoughts of flock devastation filled my mind.
When we got home I raced out back. The flock was fine and being the smart chickens that they are, they all decided to roost at the top of the6 foot fence – a place that’s safer than most. We gently grabbed the chickens one by one (counting to make sure we got them all) and placed them in the coop which was then locked after the last hen was safely inside.
This mama hen worries about her chicks when they go to ROTC training, she worries when they take the car at night to visit friends. Worries that they may not be eating right, that they need more exercise now that swim team is over. That they might not know that a good book is a good thing.
And now I have to worry about the flock being left outside after dusk because something out there in the woods wants to hurt them.
It comes down to this, I simply have no choice. For as long as I have chicks, I will forever be a mama hen.
Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com
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