My plans for an early Saturday run were canceled by the rain falling at 6 a.m., so I rolled over and fell asleep, and woke again at 8. In the kitchen, as I drank a glass of orange juice, I could hear the hens squawking in their yard. I put on my green rain coat, I pulled on my work boots, and I walked outside to check on the chickens. It was clear they wanted out of their pen. On weekends, when we’re outside working, we open the door and let them out to scratch under the trees. But the pen was a muddy mess, and I didn’t want to be out in the rain, so I promised them I’d be back.
I got into the truck, drove to J.V. Brockwell Trucking in Calvander, and paid $15 for a yard of wood chips. By the time I got home, the rain was mostly mist, and the chickens still clucking loudly, impatiently. I opened the door to let them out, and they went silent as they stepped beyond the pen. I collected five eggs inside the coop, and then used the wheel barrow to transfer the chips to the chicken yard. Within an hour, the sun was out, and the hens had come back inside their pen to explore their clean, tidy yard.
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