May 7, 2015 – Peaches greeted me this morning by stapling a printed notice to the front door of our coop. I offered to take it from her and relay whatever news she had to the rest of the flock, but she mumbled something about Addie having her fluffy bits in a sling if she were to “screw this up”.
“Alright then,” I conceded jovially. “Pray tell, what breaking information hath thou to share upon the masses?”
“You’ll have to read it yourself,” Peaches shot back uncharacteristically. “I’m terribly sorry,” she apologized. “Addie’s been riding my tail feathers over this. I was supposed to have these posted three days ago!”
She whammed a second staple into the piece of brown grocery bag that served as the official parchment before taking off in a rush to repeat the task at Coop #2.
“What was that all about?” asked Sawyer, looking over my shoulder. I leaned in to read the chicken scratch so fancifully written in purple ink.
HEAR YE, HEAR YE!
IT WAS ANNOUNCED BY BUCKINGHAM PALACE THAT A ROYAL BABY HAS BEEN BORN. THE NEW PRINCESS HAS BEEN GIVEN THE NAME CHARLOTTE, AFTER OUR VERY OWN COOPMATE, LADY CHARLOTTE OF ORPINGTON.
YOU ARE CORDIALLY INVITED TO CELEBRATE THIS MOMENTOUS EVENT WITH THE ORPINGTON SISTERS OF HENHOUSE #1, AND FORMALLY CONGRATULATE CHARLOTTE THE HEN ON THIS MOST PRESTIGIOUS HONOR.
(In lieu of gifts, Lottie is requesting cash. She has her eye on a new lap loom that costs $49.98 at the Wispy Chicken Craft Store.)
A LIGHT BUFFET FEATURING SPINACH SOUFFLES, MEATWORM PIES, CARROT CAKE AND LEMON BALM TEA WILL BE SERVED ON THE SIDE YARD TOMORROW, AT PRECISELY 4 O’CLOCK IN THE AFTERNOON. FOR THOSE UNABLE TO TELL TIME, A BELL WILL BE THRICE RUNG SIGNALLING THE START OF THE FESTIVITIES. LADY CHARLOTTE WILL ARRIVE BY WAGON (if Mom gets it out of the shed for us in time), PULLED BY THE FIVE GALLANT DRAKES OF CLUCK, CLUCK, DOO!
YOUR ATTENDANCE IS MANDATORY.
Sawyer chuckled. “Really…?”
“I am so buying myself a morning coat!” said Tim, coming up behind us.
“But it’s an afternoon affair,” I replied.
“Fiddle dee dee,” he clucked, as if I were some sort of party pooper.
“LADIES!” he crowed across the chicken yard. “Who wants to go with me to the mall? I have a tuxedo to purchase! Happy, you’ll drive us, won’t you?”
“Better do it,” said Emaline, who was rushing to find Violet with a tiara and a sack full of faux gems in her wing. “Addie is insisting that we look our Sunday best for this thing. She’s going to Skype our cousins in Britain to let them know how truly pleased we are over the matter. It’s not every day that a member of the Royal Family is named after a chicken. Addie’s letter writing campaign to the Queen must have carried a bit of influence. Anywhooo… dust off your glass slippers ladies. Tomorrow’s theme is refined sophistication. Happy – that means no peanuts in the shell!”
“But there’s a ballgame tomorrow!” I protested.
Emaline didn’t hear me. She had already turned the corner and disappeared out of sight.
“This could be fun,” said Sawyer, now completely swept up in the bustle of preparations. “C’mon! I’ll help you pick out a gown and clean your pearls.”
“I’d rather clean pine shavings off my egg chute,” I murmured. Then again, Charlotte has always been a faithful supporter of my endeavors and I do so love meatworm pies and carrot cake. “Fine! Garden party it is.”
Some days I wonder what life would be like had I been born a turkey. Sure, they’re a dour sort, certainly not prone to the same extravagant gown-wearing celebrations and lofty goals as we chickens. But I bet they can watch a ballgame whenever they want. On the other hand, there is that nasty matter of Thanksgiving, the thought of which, gives me the shivers.
So I shall share a crumpet with Charlotte and congratulate my friend on the occasion of having a royal baby girl named after her. But I am also bringing along the transistor radio and ear buds. Hey… the Moose Hill Mud Hens are hosting the Wolfeborough Warblers! It’s interleague play!!