"Gypsy gold does not chink and glitter. It gleams in the sun and neighs in the dark."

~ Saying of the Gladdagh Gypsies of Galway

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The Feathered Fear

For those who don't know me, then you don't know that I have a 'fear' of birds....well, really anything that walks and has feathers. (uck!) This phobia, if you will, was passed on down to myself and my siblings from my mother! Thanks Mom!! So, now you can understand why it is such a dilemma for my husband to get chickens. I really don't mind feathered friends as long as they keep their distance.....like at least 500 ft and I prefer if they didn't have a way to get to me either, should they chose too ;)

So, it goes without saying that I was less than thrilled when I discovered a black bird had made a nest and hatched her eggs in a rafter in my barn :/ It would be one thing if the barn ceilings were gigundous, but they aren't. When momma bird comes swooping out, she is too close to my head for [my own] comfort.....especially when I am pulling in on the tractor so my height is elevated.

I eventually got used to her and her babies in there. She didn't swoop down on me very often and minded her p's & q's. Occasionally she'd swoop down when I would enter the barn. I would quickly stop, drop and man tornado drill position while anxiety would overcome my every limb, then I would calmly stand up, brush off the hay, shoot the horses a "what?" kinda look [as they shot the same back] and get on about my business.

Well now, the babies are older. And they are all somehow managing to apparently lift their back ends over the rafter just to poo all over the floor.....just to amuse me I am sure. I told hubby the other day I better not walk in one day to see one hoping around on the ground trying to learn to fly.....or better yet....trying to learn to fly, fall and succumb to Savannah. (And Savannah is highly aware they are there).

So of course, yesterday, when I have to close the main door to clean stalls since it was raining and the horses were hanging out with me while I cleaned, I swear I kept hearing a flutter. A flutter of feathered wings. (Ewww!) (I know, those of you without this phobia just cannot comprehend my anxiety at the sound of wings flapping) So anyways, I kept hearing it and decided it was coming from the aisle where Gypsy was quietly munching hay. I promptly screamed for the hubby and demanded he turn over EVERYTHING to ensure there was no bird anywhere before I came out of the stall! He insisted. I came out.

I moved on to Apollo's stall. Apollo has a doorway in his stall that we converted into a window so there is a wall that probably comes half way up my stomach in height. This tid-bit will be important shortly. As I am cleaning, I hear a flutter again. (Ekkk). I scoop up a big pile, start sifting, hear the flutter, drop my rake, scream and hurdle the window screaming for Allen! At this point, I was sure, in my head, that there was a baby bird who somehow injured itself trying to learn to fly and ended up in my shavings pile I was sifting through my rake.

Now I am outside the barn and Allen is in. (And his friend who was over was starring at me in disbelief...And I do not think it was because of my lack of fashion when I am in my barn clothes!) No such luck -- no bird in the shavings pile. But I am not that insane.....there was a baby bird, stuck, in the divider wall between the two stalls. There are two walls separated by posts and we never closed off the top so you can 'reach down' between the two walls. OF COURSE A BIRD WOULD GET STUCK IN THERE!!! WHY NOT?! My husband insists that he doesn't think he can get it out. 'Um, hello, and then what?' So I insist he GET IT OUT!

Longer story less long, he gets a garden tool of sorts with a tall pole and sticks it down in between the walls and helps lift the bird out. (gesh. ugh) Of COURSE the bird tries to fly away, but cannot, and manages to wedge itself between a wall and outside sliding door. OF COURSE. And now, as well, The Farm Manager has awoken from her slumber....and she's sure to spot this bird any moment. UGH. So again, I insist to Allen to PICK UP THE BIRD and get it back in the dang nest. He puts on gloves and stretches to reach for this bird stuck behind a door. [Mind you, I AM across the yard as far away as possible and holding my hands over my ears. Really, lord only knows why! HA!]

And OF COURSE, that dang bird, when Allen finally caught her, wouldn't go back in the nest. She hopped back onto a stall wall. SO, I promptly told Allen to finish feeding the horses because I was NOT going back in that barn.

The End!

....until this morning when I crept in to feed and made sure I shuffled all hay I needed to pick up prior to touching to ensure there was no bird stuck in it. I hope it learned to fly overnight and taught all it's brothers and sisters to do the same!!

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