September 14, 2014 – It was downright chilly today. It amazes me how quickly the weather can change from one minute to the next around our chicken yard. Last week was hot enough to make your pantaloons droop and today I nearly dug out my fleece-lined mittens.
“You need to keep moving,” Waffles said. “That way you’ll stay toasty warm.”
“You’re wearing a sweater,” I pointed out.
“True, but I’m also half-naked from the molt. I’m not letting it get me down. You’ve got to come see the game the girls and I set up in the side yard!”
Taking a walk around the house to see what the younger hens were up to was better than standing still debating whether or not to put on my snorkel jacket. I was not expecting to see such an elaborate set up when I caught up with Waffles.
“This is amazing!” I cheered.
“It’s fabulous, isn’t it?” Waffles gushed. “Mom cleaned out her garden but left these tall, bamboo sticks behind. So we set up a series of track and field events. Kellie Pickler and Betty are over there by the duck house competing in the long jump. Hattie and Maisy are hurling frisbees in the discus competition and Dottie, Dolly Parton and I have been trying to beat the bar in the pole vault. It’s a real adrenaline rush!”
“Why don’t you simply fly over the bar?” I asked examining the uprights.
“Are you kidding, Hap? Flying is old school. With a pole, you can rocket yourself into next Tuesday! Do you want to give it a try?”
Did I want to give it a try? Of course I did! A year ago, I would have been the one setting up the Chicken Olympics.
At first, attempting to balance such a long stick while running full speed was nearly impossible. The pole got lodged in a chipmunk tunnel and I face planted next to it. Then Waffles told me about proper wing placement and that made all the difference. On my second attempt, I ran, planted the pole in the perfect spot and propelled myself up and over the crossbar. I landed on my feet inside the duck pool. It was the most fun I’ve had since Friday.
I couldn’t get enough of this new sport. At one point during an aerial ascent, I caught Mom looking out her office window. I laughed hysterically and waved to her seconds before I landed in the smelly bush. That’s what I get for showboating. I can’t image what Mom must have been thinking as one by one her hens shot across her field of vision in an arched ballet of athleticism. We were magnificent! What a brilliant sport!
By late afternoon, our entire flock, minus the baby bantams, had given the track and field course a try. Charlotte and Addie were too frightened to entertain the pole vault, but they were spectacular in the hurdles. Peaches, Sawyer and Wilma were fearless in their vaulting. Tim, weighing not much more than an acorn cap, shot himself clear across the yard. He landed on the roof of the bantam’s coop. The applause from the peanut gallery was deafening.
Today was an excellent reminder to take a little time and have fun. We’re keeping it going, too. Tomorrow it’s mealworm pizzas served up in our garage clubhouse followed by the premier of Dancing with the Stars! I know. It’s a lot of stimulation in a short amount of time, but we’re chickens. Bring it on!