Wednesday, April 1, 2009

A Fond Farewell to a Friend

.......or foe. I'm still not certain which you were, Antonio.

This is the last picture ever taken of Antonio, my ornery little rooster. He was moving too fast for my camera, hence the blurriness (maybe someone will buy me a better camera for mother's day.....nudge, nudge). He was at the threshold of the chicken house and he was threatening to attack me. Ahhh, memories.

I saw my "Antonio stick" laying in front of my chicken house yesterday. It was the stick I used to hold off his attacks until he realized who I was (the food and water lady). It made me incredibly sad that I no longer need it.

On mild fall evenings I would open the bedroom window. It would become apparent that my decision to leave the window open was a bad idea when a little, feathered someone would start incessantly crowing at four a.m. Laying there, I thought: "Dammmit, Antonio! The sun is not even thinking about rising for another two and a half hours." There were several times that he made so much noise at night, that I walked out to the chicken house, because I was certain that something was trying to murder the chickens. I would shine the flashlight in the hen house to illuminate a bunch of annoyed looking hens and turkeys (I swear that if poultry can look annoyed, they most certainly did). I'm honestly shocked that a turkey didn't just "take him out" because he was going crazy from sleep deprivation.

He didn't just crow at night, or in the morning. His crowing was pretty much an all day event. The silence now is a constant reminder of his absence. I never thought that I would mourn this hard over a chicken.

Antonio, I hope you are in that big chicken house in the sky making a terrible racket! I'll see you one day, and you will probably try to attack me. Then you'll realize..."Oh, it's the lady that always has food. She's pretty cool."