Sunday, January 24, 2010


The natives have been restless. It's all this rain. So when we catch a break and the cats do go outside...

I'm still surprised at the amount of unnatural interest the chickens invest in the doings of the Cat Nation. My sweet spouse was sitting at his keyboard the other morning when he heard a terrific noise and saw the chickens dash across the yard. Not away from the sound but towards it, just like kids in a schoolyard at the sound of a fight.

The noise was from Vivani Catpants, and directed towards two of the Reds. Vivani took the high ground; a wise choice considering her shrimpy size. And, isn't our neighbor's house pretty? You should have seen it with its Christmas lights. The blooming camellia is a nice touch, too.*

All the poultry come rushing over: Benny and Carlin are in back by their pond. In front, from left to right: Lola and Frenchy the Buff Orpingtons, Sonja the Rhode Island Red, Pearl and Marilyn the Golden-laced Wyandottes, and Collette, Ives, and Coco the Marans. (Yes, I said I would not name Him That Cannot Be Named. But just because I'm calling him Ives doesn't mean I won't eat him if he's a bad rooster.) Betty the Australorp is not shown; she must've been on the nest.

Later in the day Huespedes got into it with a Red on the other side of our yard, and again the chicken dashed over to watch the fight. Weird.

Guys, where's my backup? These fat chickens aren't cutting it! (Can you tell she's wearing a collar with a tag? Thought not! But she is.)

The reds—Big Red and Extra Red—plot their next move. Not today, perhaps, but soon. Soon!

*At 44, it shouldn't surprise me anymore, but it does: in the winter the rest of the country is brown and leafless! Weird! It felt so good and reassuring to look down out the airplane window and see the green, green, green of California welcoming me back. Lawns are vibrant, the hills glow with green, camellias and roses bloom...I think we're going to have a spectacular springtime for wildflowers this year.

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