By Guest Blogger Chicken Wrangler Sara
We had a student from Uzbekistan living with us last school year. He was very quiet and spent most of his time in his room.
He came out to see the International Space Station pass overhead one night. Another time he came out to see the chickens hatching.
We had set quail eggs, bantam eggs and chicken eggs. Three bantam eggs, one chicken egg and one quail egg hatched. Over the process of several days, Andrey would check the incubator each morning to see the progress.
He helped me move them out to the brooder in the garage, and we stood to watch them for quite a while. He took pictures as I did.
He told me his sister had a chick one time. She really loves animals. He was going to send the picture to her.
It was a rare glimpse into his life far away and made me think how animals could be good for the soul.
A friend is involved in a therapy dog program that sounds wonderful. She and her dog go to the hospital to visit sick children.
We considered training one of our dachshunds to be a therapy dog and decided chickens can have an equally calming effect on people.
Watching the little quail try to hide under the bigger chicks made Andrey forget how hard it was to be so far from home. Holding the baby chicks could melt away any stress from the day.
One of the bantam chicks is a frizzle – its feathers are sticking up all over just like Frizz’s feathers.
I can’t look at it without smiling.
So now, whenever I am overwhelmed, sad or just need a break, I step outside for some chicken therapy.
Since I had to look up Uzbizistan (I can’t even spell it now) in our atlas, which sadly is out of date, I can only imagine how alone your house guest must feel. I’ve lived outside the US and, introspect, cherish every moment. Now that you mention the closing of the gap with your chickens, I understand that my saving grace was my love of horses. The Peruvian Cavalry permitted me to ride with them not because of my towering talent nor ability to influence foreign aid, but my love of their horses. That was our common ground. Not unlike tiny chickens emerging from their shells.
… All creatures great and small…