Yesterday I published an entry about losing my chickens, but it has disappeared somehow. I'll try again with much less emotion since I have weathered the worst of it now. More neighbor complaints finally forced me to re-home my beloved chickens. Yesterday they left for their new home with Mercedes, a new friend who lives in a fairly close town. She has a farm with all kinds of animals. including chickens. They probably thought they had been transported to heaven since she took them away with a huge piece of watermelon in the cage. They never looked back.
I can't blame my neighbors for not wanting the infestation of rats that the chickens caused, but the way they handled it irritates me. These are summer residents, here for two months, who apparently feel that the way to solve problems is to call in the authorities. These neighbors have never said a word to me about the chickens. I only know them from their constant warnings to me to not let the dogs "shit on my lawn.." I have never not picked up after my dogs, so their attitude was very irritating, especially since I rarely go by their house.
Well, since this was the second complaint, the police told me (very nicely and sympathetically) that the chickens had to go. Actually, they contacted my landlord first. Apparently it isn't part of their protocol to deal with the offender first. She was very understanding and I was the picture of cooperation.
So this is the end of my chicken era. They have been part of my identity for so long that I feel I have lost part of myself. Ever since I came to Eastport over twenty years ago and the landlord I had then asked if he could leave his chickens with me, I have been smitten. Many chickens have come and gone, and I've loved them all.
Friday, July 03, 2020
After trashing my garden in yesterday's post, I noticed this rose among the weeds along my front walk. I planted five rose bushes in memory of my grandfather, who had a walk like mine to his front door. Last year I thought they were all dead, but this morning as I limped out to the sidewalk with my trash, I noticed two little roses peaking out from under the weeds.. I was delighted. When I started to pull the weeds out around them, this blossom came with them, much to my chagrin. So I brought it in and gave it a special environment all its own.
Thursday, July 02, 2020
Yesterday I had a visit from the town manager (with police backup in case I needed to be subdued, I guess). The reason was to tell me, as if I didn't know, that there are rats living in the abandoned garage behind my house. Of course I was aware of them since they join the chickens for every meal. It's true that they aren't particularly welcome additions to my menagerie, but I really didn't know how to handle the situation. I would never kill any animal, not even a rat, but my live and let live attitude seems to have offended my neighbors. I know that even those who love animals usually don't include rodents in their acceptance of nature sharing their property.
I rent this house from an extremely absentee and neglectful landlady. This has always suited me perfectly since she requires nothing from me but a very small rent payment. Neither does she take much interest in maintaining the property. Until the roof had to be replaced last year I hadn't seen her for years. The arrangement suits me perfectly. She has no rules or regulations and I treat the place as if it were my own. Now, though, the police are holding her responsible for ridding the neighborhood of rodents. I have no realistic objection to this, but apparently my neighbors and the long arm of the law expected an argument from me. Once they realized that I was fully cooperative and good-humored about the situation, a fairly good time was had by all. I would have appreciated my neighbors confronting my landlord directly, or at least asking me to do it, but amazingly people seem to always expect trouble when they complain. Since I was cheerful and cooperative, the situation was handled as cooperatively as could be expected. I called the landlady (in California) and exterminators will be here shortly (so she says). I apologized to the rats this morning, and warned them, but I'm afraid they are doomed. It will certainly save me money on chicken feed.