I have had a deep seeded fear of birds ever since I can remember.I might as well be honest.I really can’t stand birds.Anybody that uses that against me should be ashamed.Really ashamed.I probably need therapy because of birds.Or in my neck of the world a bird free zone.Or both.Nuff said.
The first story I ever heard about this problem came from my beloved Grandma Jahr.She said we were out in the garden picking strawberries.I was singing hhhmhmhhm so happy and telling her that she could call me her Dilly.(That nickname and plenty of others stem from that to this day) I had my hind end up in the air and she started to throw little clumps of dirt on me.She said I would look around to see what hit me and when I found nothing I would go back to getting the strawberries.The story goes that after a time I got scared and declared,”Grandma,the robbie got me!”And so it began.At the tender age of two I thought a freaken robin flew into me.
As I got older it was my job to go get the eggs from the chicken coop for her while Grandma was making supper.I hated that job and she knew it but she made me face my fears and out I went.A bucket of water and a bucket of feed for the trough was in each of my hands.In that coop was a great big white rooster that knew I was coming.Every time you would walk in the door he would be perched on one of the nests hanging on the wall.From there he would make his attack and come flying at you with his beady eyes glaring and his wings spread.I was petrified and he knew it.That creep did that to me time and time again and in the house I would go bawling.He never did that to us when Grandma went out in the morning and I was with her, just when I gathered the eggs alone in the evening and I don’t know to this day if she really believed me at the time.Grandma loved her birds.Remember Fancy girls?She was a trained black and white hen my Grandma had that would sing on command.
That rooster’s last evening on earth started out the same as always.I opened the door with my two buckets and this time he aimed right for my face and nabbed me.I got a small scratch on the side of my eye and it started to bleed.This time I had proof,a wound and blood.I dropped both buckets and chop and water went everywhere.I high tailed it for the house with my voice in another time zone.People my adrenaline right now is airborne and I am breathing hard.
I came in that house like the coop was on fire bawling at the top of my lungs.He pushed me too far that time and I was never going in there again.I told Grandma what happened.She turned the burners off on the stove and out we went stopping for her little axe in the tool shed by the house.I can still see her in her old house dress with her apron on and her high heels walking that little limping walk of hers. In that coop my brave Grandma charged with her chicken hooker and she nabbed him with me watching in horror behind her.His wings were flapping and he was squawking trying to free himself but I thought too late pal your goose is cooked.Over to the head chopping block Grandma went and off with his head.She told me we would have chicken soup for dinner the next day and we did.Boy,was it good.I am not kidding,or maybe it was extra tasty because of a certain ingredient.Hahahahahah.
I knew Grandma really loved me when she killed that rooster and never knew the real reason for the butchering until she was telling Grandpa about it at our chicken soup feast the next day.Imagine my surprise when Grandpa said it was for the best.His exact words were————
“We can’t have Dilly wasting the chicken feed like that.”