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48. A white ball with feathers

Sir Oliver's Granny

We did our evening walk with sir Oliver as usual. In winter now, we during the evening in the dark. Whenever sir Oliver is sniffing the ground, in the dark, I tend to watch him closely to see if he is not eating anything along the sniffing process. Which means that I am walking quite a bit with my head bend down.

At a certain point, on 1 third of the walk, I slowly looked up. Sir Oliver was peeing and I had a moment to look around. While lifting my head up, I saw a white ball on an old rickety fence. I blinked my eyes, not sure what it was I saw. Looking again, I saw a white ball, but now with feathers. Feathers! I did bend a bit forward to have a closer look. It’s a chicken!

At the same time I was in denial of it being a chicken. My mind said: nope, not possible. The physical reality gave me feedback, saying: yep, it’s a chicken. So I looked again, maybe it is a fake chicken like an ornament, went through my mind. Then the chicken’s head moved, I was a little startled and stepped back.

I told my daughter, look a chicken, there’s a chicken sitting on that rickety fence. My daughter had  a look and went more or less through the same phases I just went through. Now that we were positive that it was a living chicken sitting on a rickety fence where there should normally not be a chicken, we said: and now?

I suggested she would ring the bell of that house, since I had sir Oliver on the leash. To ask the residents if the chicken was their’s, or whether they know who’s chicken it is. Normally my daughter would not just go and ring anyones bell, but now when there was a chance of an animal being in danger, she grabbed herself and rang the bell.

It took a bit before the man opened the door, waving with €20, thinking that my daughter was the courier that would bring him and his family the food they had ordered. My daughter explained the situation with the chicken and the man turned out to not be the owner of this white chicken. He said: just let the chicken be, don’t worry.

We did worry. There was a busy road on the other side of the house, dogs running around unleashed. We didn’t want the chicken to get hurt or even killed. On the other side of the road there is a gypsy camp and they do have chickens. So the bird might have flown across the road. I suggested to use our Nextdoor app, where citizens of this district in town communicate with each other. At least then we could ask if someone had an idea who’s chicken it was.

Then when almost home, my daughter wanted to go there again without sir Oliver,  to see if the chicken was still okay. Before it seemed as if the chicken was sleeping on the fence. When she arrived the residents told her that they had called the emergency number and asked for an animal ambulance. I had no idea we could have asked for an ambulance for a chicken, so cool it was possible. Taking the chicken home with us to a house with cats and a dog was no option.

Later that evening my daughter asked on the Nextdoor app if someone was missing a white chicken. One lady responded, thinking that the chicken probably belonged to the gypsy camp. The chicken is brought to an animal shelter where they already have more chickens.

What seemed to be just a normal walk with sir Oliver, became a rescue story of a white chicken. And sir Oliver he never looked at the chicken, he might not even have seen it. And if he had, he had not known what it was. A white ball with feathers.