I wasn’t able to get out much today, between indexing in the AM and cooking dinner for the community (with the oyster mushrooms that I found last Thursday). Early this morning, I rode down to let the chickens out of their house, and saw that there was no frost, apparently it hadn’t quite hit freezing last night. Always a little bit disconcerting in January. All day today felt a little bit springtimey, makes me wonder if we’re going to have a repeat of last year’s “year without winter.” I hope we do get some actual snow and ice this winter, but warm sunny days like today are not going to get us there.
The only real time I got to spend outside today was my afternoon walk to the chicken yard to collect eggs. On this short walk, I really listened to and relished the relative silence of the afternoon. Most of the year, Twin Oaks is filled with an incessant chatter of birdsong; most of the time during the winter, you can hear the rumble of tractors, the whine of chainsaws, the humming of the tofu hut, music being blasted out of one building or another, far-off trucks on the interstate 6 miles away, the overhead sonic smear of jet engines. Today, in between the lowing of our cows and the distant response of the neighbor’s cows, there were moments of near-total stillness. All too rare, and good to notice when it happens.
Free Willy the rooster was again at the chicken yard, and this time he seemed determined to get into the enclosure, pacing around the perimeter of the fence as though checking for weaknesses. There’s a big stepladder in the hay barn near the chicken lot. Just as an experiment, I set it up next to the fence so that if he really wanted, he could jump up the steps of the ladder, and then jump across into the enclosure. Curious to see if he goes for it, and if he does, what happens next. Hopefully I’ll have more time to get out tomorrow.