Monday, June 16, 2008

romania eh?

The longer I live in Sandgate, the more I think I'm in Romania. Sandgate feels like a pre-industrial farm society nestled in big dark mountains. The roads are dirt, and there are more horses on them than cars. There are more farm animals than people in general. Ravens and crows are more common than sparrows, and the rolling hills of ancient farmhouses (some I'm sure older than America itself), make the place seem ancient and worldly. I adore this place. I don't even miss the sounds of trains.

So yesterday, while on my usual Romanian jog, I stopped at a barbed-wire fence by the side of the road to pet some neighbor's horses and give them a big fistful of green grass just out of their long neck's reach. I was patting their heads and tussling with their manes when I heard a "Ba Buck BAWW!" and turned around. Behind me, Alfred Hitchcock style, were about seven chickens. All just staring at me on the dirt road. They had snuck up behind me from the farm across the way while I was in horseland.

Now, these aren't the docile dumpy chickens I'm used too, but like, a gang of underprivileged youth chickens. They should've all had matching bandanas and switchblades with the way they looked me, casing me for a weakness. The horses behind me I swear nearly laughed. "You're on your own kid," and they trotted away to the other pasture. At my thigh was a giant white rooster, looking up at me with little dinosaur eyes. I reached down to pet him, tell him I'm okay with his bad self, and "BAW CAAAAAWWWWW BUCK BAWW!" He jumped up and slashed at me with his spurs! he cut open my hand and then started coming back for more. I yelled, sweaty and stupid in the pastoral Eden "WHAT'S YOUR PROBLEM BIRD!" and he strutted and hissed circles around me. The dairy goat and her kids on the hill watched, amused I'm sure, with muted thrills. Not wanting to temp the jerk by fighting back or running, I just stepped over him and continued my jog. Apparently, not all roosters are nice as my Rufus.

As I jogged back to my cabin, I came across a neighbor with two draft horses on a cart. The little rhinos without horns were plodding along in what looked like it had once been an old tractor converted into a draft cart. They ambled on past me, hand bloody as I waved, and headed back to their farm with polite but concerned looks. Now I've never been to eastern Europe. But I have a feeling on the backroads 45 minutes outside of Prague, a similar event probably went down.

P.S. The top image in this post is Sandgate, the one below, Romania...

4 Comments:

Blogger Diana said...

Classic attack of the un-handled rooster, my dear. If the little beasty tries it again, catch and humiliate 'im by petting, scratching, cooing, & generally treating him like the best damn chicken in the world. He won't try it again, cause you'll have beaten him. (Also, his harem will have seen he's mortal and he'll be busy trying to win them over again.)

Bruce & I are trying to plan an escape to VT this summer. Can't wait!

June 16, 2008 at 7:26 PM  
Anonymous Christa said...

Sandgate sounds like a great place! Great story. Andy and I think we want to get a rooster... any suggestions on the introductions?

June 17, 2008 at 10:35 AM  
Blogger Jenna said...

i think your best bet is to raise your own, but most small farm roosters aren't that rough. I'd say find one on craigslist in teh farm setion near your place and if he isn't attacking you when you meet him, he's probably a winner!

June 17, 2008 at 12:29 PM  
Anonymous Christa said...

Good plan, thanks! I think I know someone who has a lot of chicks and may have a rooster to give away! I may need advise once I get him though!

June 17, 2008 at 2:41 PM  

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