Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Don't be a chicken.


I really really want chickens in my backyard. There is a whole movement for backyard chickens. My city doesn't allow chickens in backyards. But...well...what they don't know won't hurt them? Or me? The worst that could happen is that they'd make me get rid of my chickens...but I know two people off the top of my head that would, more than likely, take them should I get busted for smuggling chickens into my backyard. They are so beneficial...fresh eggs, manure for your garden, pest control...oh yeah, I need me some chickens.

I don't know why simple living is such a radical concept. Why am I not ALLOWED to have some dang chickens in my OWN backyard? Why is it weird to grow vegetables in your FRONT yard? Why are you so different if you want to make your own cheese or can your own food? If you think about it...and talk to your grandparents about it!...it wasn't that long ago that having chickens and gardens and knowing how to preserve food was a way of life, a necessity. My grandparents talk about making their own cheeses and salami and sausages...growing gardens...milking cows...my grandfather made shoes for himself and all of his siblings...all 11 of them! All of this was the norm less than a hundred years ago. In the scheme of things, that's a relatively short time. Yes, I get that life was harder...the work was hard...but if you think about it, it was also much more simple. And that's what I'm looking for...simplicity. Purity. Truth. I want these things in day to day life...in food...in everything.

I think my grandmother thinks I'm crazy for wanting to do things the way she did them. She always complains about how hard life was...how hard she worked...she blames her ill-health on all of her hard labor as a child. And she did work hard. Her story is an interesting one...maybe I'll share a bit another time. I admire her a lot...and respect all that she endured to make it to where she is today. I only wish that she and my grandfather had the desire to pass on everything they know...or knew, now...about gardening and preserving and digging root cellars and making cheeses and baking breads...I wish they had valued that way of life enough to pass it along to me. Unfortunately, they were sold on the idea of convenience and ease. I can't blame them. But...they sold out to it...and taught my mom to forage for her food in a grocery store...and she taught me the same...and now all of that old country knowledge is gone. All of the recipes and techniques for making your own food is nothing but a blurry memory in the minds of my 90 year old grandparents. I feel robbed. Oh, the irony...

1 comment:

Beth said...

We are getting chickens this coming spring. BUT...I have to have a permit. 3 chickens, no roosters. As far as the city is concerned, we will only have 3! :)