No two days are ever the same, and yet, most days have an element of sameness to them. We rise early, every day, and head out to the barn as the sun is rising. No two sunrises are ever the same.
We tend to the chores... the same basic list each and every day... and yet, the air is never the same. The sounds are never the same. Each day gives us a fresh palette of sensory experiences. I truly look forward to each and every morning and all of the work that awaits me. It's peaceful. It centers me. Making sure that every one of my charges is taken care of in the best way possible starts the day off on the right foot.
Each morning, we open the door to Old Tom Turkey's house and bid him good morning. We talk about the weather for a moment. Then I pick him up and lift him down to the floor...trying to spare his feet from jumping down the four-foot drop from his night's perch.
Tom's feet are his weak point, so anything we can do to preserve them is essential. At the end of the day, Hubbs will lift him back up to his perch for the night.
But the time between... the waking hours... are spent like this:
Good morning! He stretches and shakes off the night... getting his feathers in order.
Then, he saunters over to the chicken yard...
where he will spend the day communing with the "chicks" and their rooster, Elwood.
A little wing action gets him over the threshold to the chicken yard,
where, once inside, he settles in to enjoy the morning's snack of scratch (but not until he puffs himself up and shows off how fabulous he [still] is!).
Tom's a sweet old bird, at 11 years. He's come to trust us over the years.... even allowing physical affection.
The present arrangement seems to be a good one for him. His walking is limited to the chicken yard (in the past he would wander over the entire farm). The chickens provide him with companionship and diversion - something that all beings need!
I may have mentioned before that the oldest recorded domestic turkey was 12 years and 4 months. Maybe Old Tom will beat this record. We'll certainly do our part to help him get there!
I caught this yesterday morning... the perfect rump scratcher!
I received a question pertaining to our "rodeo" earlier this week when we had to round up our runaway equine herd. We have learned, over the years, to take a bucket of hard feed along with us when we attempt to re-catch our horses. A couple shakes of the feed bucket and everyone is more than willing to be caught. Everyone, that is, except for our pony Scarlet. She, invariably, ends up running home on her own... following the rest of the herd, whom we usher back to the barn in halters and lead ropes. Scarlet refuses to be caught, but willingly runs back into the dry lot after the rest of her family are secured in there.
None of the horses ever wants to be alone without their herd. So, where one goes... they all go. This makes round-up so much easier!