I don’t know how many times last spring I was all set to go fishing, then realized the chicken coop needed to be cleaned out. It didn’t matter how often I cleaned it, those disgusting birds made such a mess, every time I cleaned the coop, it took the better part of the day. If it hadn’t been made of particle board, I’d have just turned the hose on it and squirted it out.
But I cleaned the coop for the last time, at least for a while, over the weekend. The chickens had stopped laying eggs, so we had to decide whether we were going to go get more birds or go chickenless for the time being. Thankfully, the family decided to take a break from chicken ranching this year.
The final coop cleaning ruined my plans to go wet a fly on Saturday, but I wasn’t too disappointed. The fact that the coop is now spotless, and will remain that way for the foreseeable future, means I won’t be derailed by chicken chores next weekend. Or the weekend after. Or any weekend this spring, summer or fall. Granted, we still have the pigs, horses and cows, but those critters are all a lot more self-sufficient – and cleaner – than chickens.
And cleaning the chicken coop may have gotten in the way of fishing, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t get to do anything fun. When we got rid of the chickens, two of the more feral specimens escaped capture. They’ve been living off the land for the past week or so, but I didn’t want them to die slowly and painfully. So I got to spend a little bit of time Sunday on a chicken hunt. Some people have turkey shoots, but I was content with a chicken shoot.
So this weekend, I believe I’ll go fishing. If I don’t catch any fish for dinner, that’s OK. I have plenty of chicken.