Talk about a sucker punch! I really never saw that nasty bit of illness heading my way. I have heard around here lately that you should take antibiotics with anti-malarials these days. But living here, it’s easy to forget that this disease is a killer. Being all-knowing and obviously immortal, when I got stopped short by malaria last week, I never did that. After one fairly perky day after my course I was properly taken down. I’ve had quite a few days of fever, aches, and no logic to the fuzziness of my brain. I’m still far from being in any way perky, and quite nervous now of disease comebacks. I don’t think that I’ve ever felt worse in my life. But I believe I’ll change my stubborn ways now, and pop pills left, right and centre forevermore. The eight hour round trip to a new and unknown doctor isn’t going to happen either, unless I keel over and get carried out. I have my feathered flock to worry about. Who will they have to abuse if I’m not around? So I’d better just get better now, and that’s that really.
I’m pretty sure that delirious is the word for my frame of mind yesterday when I stumbled my way to the kitchen for some water. I peered out the window, as you do, and saw three distinctly chickeny looking things zooming across the lawn towards the enclosure where Jack and Diane (the turkeys) sleep. I fished my cellphone out of my pocket. I was fairly convinced that they weren’t real. These have been some strange fevers, and my eyeballs seemed to not be firing on all cylinders most of the time – they’re still not on top form really. Not trusting them at all. I took a few pictures to verify that these fowls were really real, and not the product of some gross little parasite munching away at my brain cells. I headed on out, and there they were, munching on turkey leftovers. Three funny looking bush chickens with standing up feathers on their heads. They glanced up at me, obviously feeling right at home, then carried on munching. I ran out of steam at that point and went back in to conk back out.
Anyway. It transpired that they were owned by a guy called Sunny Boy, who is in charge of the big generator here. I said to send a message to him, that his chickens were here, and when he came to get them, he eyeballed me sympathetically, and said that if I liked them, I could have them, no charge. I almost took my phone out to record him, again doubting my senses. The people here can’t afford to head on to town to buy chickens or anything else for that matter, and they have very little money. Their livestock is very important to them, and they don’t generally give it away. These three chickens would have been kept for his family’s special occasions, or sold to buy some other essential. I’m thinking that they are chicken, guinea fowl crosses, which would explain their interesting looks, and is quite a common mix here. As I was saying, I knew that he couldn’t afford to give them to me but I didn’t want to insult him by not taking his gift. My reputation for being ruled by all things feathered, my wild hair, and probably rolling eyeballs must have invoked his pity. “No, no,” said I, “I would love to buy them from you.” “No, no” said he, “They are my gift to you.” For once cultural niceties would have to be forgone though. Of course I absolutely refused accept his noble gesture. I insisted on paying, and I did, and I don’t think this upset him too much after all. I’m just really amazed at this weird little happening. Three odd little chickens moving in all on their lonesome, and settling down to stay.
As those of my friends who had the courage to read my previous terrible blog will know, I have had chickens on my mind of late. Not to mention my most cool Naka in Shadow People, chicken looking scientist guy of note, who gave me some trouble to begin with, as to the place of large clever chickens in science fiction novels. To be honest, the things that I’ve recently discovered about chicken “farming” have seriously depressed me, dented my belief that people don’t do cruel and terrible things unless it’s unavoidable, even though it’s for profit, and made me consider the facts of size and availability. Of course I love my big gorgeous elephants, and am right behind anyone lobbying to stop the shooting of them, but it seems to me that if you are small, and easy to breed you are insignificant. The smaller you are, and the more you breed, the less likely you are to feel pain apparently. There aren’t a lot of people fighting for the rights of the humble chicken. Although there will be one more from now. Me.
I am a little amazed that the universe gave me chickens, here and now. These three little guys, or girls, we shall have to wait and see what they turn out to be, have cheered me up no end. I have no clue how they got in, and Sunny Boy has no clue why they left, but that’s what they did. They headed on over, and moved right in, just when I couldn’t have done with anything better. Jack has been strutting around, showing them how gorgeous he is with his feathers fluffed out, and Diane is appalled at the very sight of them, so they’ve been given their own house to sleep in.
Before I get back to catching up on all that I’ve missed these last few days, I must mention that Kewpie the baby weaver has been practicing his flying, obviously because my older weaver bird has had more opportunities to assault him while I’ve been sick. She’s turned into the real Angry Bird with her jealous tantrums. To the tune of, “Ack, ack, ack,” Kewpie now zooms off quite nicely when she heads on over to bounce on his little head. Although he is still scared of her, as are we all. I’m starting to think I need a bird whisperer. How do you control two inches of screeching feathers that feels she can chase the dog away all by herself, and actually can? Here she is glaring from her grimy light fitting, which no one is allowed near to clean. Dear little Jelly the terror.
Till next time friends. xxx