Sunday, 9 October 2011


This year it's chickens, and ducks soon too. Though Nana, the little silky hen whose function in life is to hatch other people's babies, failed to finish the hatch, she got it going and Geoff is now the hatchlings' father.

He and Bum Bum, the birth father, have been out in the back garden sucking on cigars and Martel to celebrate. There'd been a setback in Geoff's fatherhood plans when Mrs Duck's first abandoned brood didn't make it. Big disappointment, but she is now sitting on half a dozen eggs and they'll be out in ten days or so. She started sitting just after Nana. We lost several to the bush turkey who we realised was responsible for sweeping them out of the egg box, so now MRs duck is locked in all day. Not that she particularly cares, she's so completely in the zone.

Ah, the zone, I can still remember it. Those first few months of motherhood where your entire focus is on a small squirming bundle of need. For the birds, it's that window of 25 days expended solely in the service of transferring her concentrated conserved energy to her eggs. I still can't believe it when they emerge. Gets me every time.

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