Top that! Seriously, it was one of my more varied two-days-off. Luckily, the Universe was smiling on us, weather-wise. It was a bright, sunny, low-humidity day (both), and there were four of us working with the chickens. May I inject here that I will never do that many chickens again? Do you know how many feathers are on a chicken? Do you? Well, I do now and it's billions. Of course, I did completely, willingly and with much thankfulness not witness or participate in the killing part. And, while I witnessed the gutting part, I did not do it. I was too busy dealing with the twelve-plus billion feathers and removal of same. Kay and her husband - a surprise and welcome participant - helped with the plucking. If it had been just me, I would still be there. If I was going to do this on a fairly regular basis, I would be the first in line to pony up the bucks for a plucker. But, I will NOT be doing this on a regular basis. I retained a breeding group - a rooster and two hens - so that, if I wish for a chicken dinner in the future, I will gather up a few eggs and incubate them. A few at a time. All in all, it took us a little over two and a half hours to finish up. And, by the third bird, I was a lot less nit-picky about the pin feathers (which is why I was watching a dark, moody Swedish movie while finishing the job. It seemed appropriate.) Chickens, without their clothes on, are not cuddly and I was surprisingly detached. It was not how I imagined it to be. But we know how over-active and fevered my imagination is. Kidding aside, the experience was sobering and made me very aware and respectful of the source of my food.
After everything had been cleaned up and put away, I zipped home to put the birds in the fridge and drop off the huge bag of garlic scapes I mooched off my neighbor, then drove over to Sylvie's to help her move the heavy things into her POD. There is an amazing amount of space in these things - and such a great and clever idea. We got some of the bigger things moved in and there was still a lot of room. The biggest challenge is to figure out how to best lash everything down so there is as little shifting around as possible when the POD is moved to storage. I am assuming the POD movers are not related to the USPS and will not fling it about from point A to point B. But, the best part about PODs is that they don't have feathers.
I then zipped up to VT to get gas and buy my dad his Father's Day chocolates. Then I zipped home - stopping on my way to see a friend who is not often home but was. As chance would have it, I pulled into their driveway at 5 minutes to 4. Four o'clock being their cocktail hour. It's all in the timing. I then spent a very nice hour, sitting on their porch with a glass of white wine while we caught up. It was very nice and civilized and in complete contrast to my morning. Then I zipped home, did chores, fed everyone, consoled the surviving three fricassees, whipped up a batch of pumpkin hummus for a Father's Day appetizer, and made a batch of garlic scape pesto. Then I had another glass of wine and stopped. If I have a day planned like the day I had on Saturday, I don't dare stop before the end.
Sunday was a blur of delivering of bee ware, cooking, cleaning, and spending a very enjoyable afternoon with my dear daddy-o, mother and Sylvie - who is gracious and listens to the endless-loop conversation - or monologue - of my father while he relives his grade school days, finds her time in France fascinating and grills her mercilessly about her family heritage, background and any other topic that whizzes through his bean while he has her as a captive audience. I, ungrateful friend that I am, left her there with nothing more fortifying than a glass of iced tea and beat a hasty retreat to the kitchen.
So, as the dark and moody Bergman movie dims and bid us pa Avsluta, I leave you with a photograph NOT of chicken plucking, but of a flourless concoction - Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies from the latest Martha Stewart Magazine. Better, no?
|No flour. No fat. No kidding!|