(Moon photo used with permission of Rhys Jones, Wikimedia Commons)
You may think it unfair that I would dump a chicken into my father's coop in the middle of the night without asking. You'd be right if my father weren't known around Fooleryland as The Chicken Fairy; he has dumped several chickens into my coop without asking. One of those dumped birds was Chicken Dinner, the rooster who terrorized the hens into a molt from which they haven't recovered. My lovely old Buff Orpington Caramel stayed in the stifling hen house most of the summer, and decided in September to live outside. Chicken Dinner had to go so I could bring Caramel back to her rightful home.
And I did, Thursday night after my Beta Sigma Phi meeting. You didn't know we have Beta Sigma Phi in Fooleryland, did you? Well we do. And I was still wearing a dress but I ditched my heels in favor of Crocs -- wearing heels to carry a chicken down a long gravel driveway in the dark, now that's just silly.
This time I involved my parents, who were expecting me. Dad held the flashlight while I . . . well, I chickened out. I couldn't tell him but I am far too arachnophobic to crouch down (in my dress) to stick my arm into a dark spidery chicken coop to pull a sleepy chicken off her roost, flashlight be damned. "Never mind," I said and ducked out of the coop. "Caramel can stay another night. I don't think I can get her."
"Oh, it's easy," said Dad, who stomped past me into the coop, bent down, swept Caramel from her perch and handed her to me. "See?" The Chicken Fairy still has lessons to teach us.
I headed back down the driveway under the brilliant moon, Caramel pressed to my ribs, resting what should be her chin upon my arm. She was the picture of contentment and trust and I patted her silky feathers all the way home. And she was going home.
Chas came out to hold the flashlight for me while I put Caramel back into her old hen house.
I made him go first in case there were spiders.