Is it just me or are "urban chickens" all people talk about these days? The latest issue of Pure Green Magazine had a feature on starting your own coop in their latest issue and every single person in my life has asked me recently "So... when are you getting chickens?" [This question has almost always been preceded by "So... are you pregnant yet?", as though buying a 6 bedroom house in the country means I want to fill them with babies. I have A LOT OF SHOES, folks! And where would I put you, dear visitors, if I filled the rooms with tiny crying people who are going to grow up to resent me?!]
As soon as I scoff at both of these questions, the person in question will invariably say "but chickens are so easy!" Never mind that only one of the 7,129 people who have said this to me has ever even tended chickens. Or that the one person who had was a child at the time and went on to say that their family did it for a year before giving up, since keeping them from being eaten and heating the chicken coop in our frigid winters was a giant pain in the butt.
Don't get me wrong, I think it's an AWESOME thing to keep chickens, and yes, we have the space and the appropriate rate of organic egg consumption in our household to make it worthwhile.
But don't tell me it's easy.
I have never owned a pet. I like to leave my house for weeks at a time. I do not like to clean up poop. Our hydro bill is high enough as it is without another building to require heating. And though I have so far managed to not be eaten by a coyote, I am loath to take on the responsibility for protecting others from that fate.
So when our lovely neighbour built a coop and handed us breakfast-in-a-bowl in the form of 2 duck eggs, 2 chicken eggs, and a couple sprigs of asparagus.... well, I got super excited. MAYBE I CAN HAVE THE FRESH EGGS WITHOUT THE WORK. I'd even be willing to chicken-sit once in awhile. Let's see if I can charm my way in.