January 16, 2015 – The other day, I poked my head inside Lottie’s purse. It smells so nice in there. Under a white lace handkerchief was a small tin of wintergreen mints. I didn’t think she would mind if I helped myself to one or two.
They were exhilarating! In rapid succession, I inhaled seven potent pucks of glacial fire. Instantly, a chilling grip, a paralyzing wave of burning ice, seized my body, and I fell to the floor of Coop #1 in a frozen, useless heap.
I could hear the mournful wails of Sawyer and Peaches, clearly distraught over the belief that I had departed to that great henhouse in the sky. Disturbingly, it was but two seconds later, that their focus shifted elsewhere. They became embroiled in a senseless debate with Lottie and Addie over the expiration date of the mints; supposedly, I assume, because my own date of expiration was no longer in question.
I tried several times to inform them that I was “temporarily” incapacitated, but each time I tried to speak or bat an eyelash, nothing happened. I had been flash-frozen on the spot by the frost miser of mints!
I don’t know how it happened, but at some point Waffles and Betty burst onto the scene with a green canvas stretcher. Without uttering so much as a groan, they rolled me on to the carrier and rushed me off to Coop #3 for what I feared was a premature disposal. I was relieved when instead, they laid me on the floor and waited for Wilma. I sensed her presence long before I heard her voice. I could feel her mealworm breath occupying the airspace above my face. I was terrified that she might give my rigid body a swift kick and roll me out the back door into the woods like a chewed up hunk of ear wax. Instead, she leaned her head close to mine and stared into my motionless eyes with a magnifying glass. MY magnifying glass! She opened my beak and tilted her ear close to my mouth. Then she sat back on her heels and sighed.
“She’s fine. It’s a temporary condition. A similar thing happened to me when I was a pullet. I came upon a pack of peppermint gum and shoved every stick into my mouth at once. Only my condition was worse. I blew an impressive bubble that exploded over my head. By the time my friend Roxie found me, she thought I had been eaten by a swamp monster and spit back out again. I looked like bat crap!”
Wilma laughed heartily at her own story and that got Waffles and Betty going. I was sitting up on my elbows staring at them for a good minute before they even noticed I was responsive.
“Oh good, you’re awake!” Wilma announced after I cleared my throat. “Keep a rotation on her for the next 24-hours,” she instructed, before leaving the coop to inform the others that I had lived.
I thought for sure that I would be teased without mercy over the incident, but not a harsh word was spoken. Instead, I was pampered and waited on until the flock was convinced that I was back to my usual self.
“I’m terribly sorry about the mishap with the mints,” Lottie apologized. “It was a dreadful pity that you were affected as you were.”
“I’m fine,” I replied cheerfully. “It was my own fault for over-indulging.”
“And it was my fault for not being more careful about what’s inside my purse,” she conceded.
“It could have been worse,” I chuckled. “You could have had a tin full of laxatives!”
Lottie chortled until tears filled her eyes. I love her snorty laugh. It’s brilliant!