Dec 29, 2010 | 3 comments


     I’m happy to report that our ‘farm fresh eggs’ are laid by calm, stress-free hens.  Or so it would seem…
     On the day after Christmas, The Honorary Oysterville Militia (THOM) gathered to fire the village cannon.  The salute was in honor of our neighbor Carol’s son, Eric, and his family who were here for the holidays.  They were returning home to Bermuda the following day and, since Eric is a member in good standing of the militia and wouldn’t be here for the traditional New Year’s Day firing, General Nyel rounded up the troops.
    About two dozen folks – militia members, spouses, curious by-standers, and chickens – gathered for the big boom.  As we stood and watched the preparations for firing, we heard the distinctive high-pitched cackle of two bald eagles.  Everyone except the hens and the rammer looked up and for a few seconds we watched two birds soar overhead, perhaps in a territorial ‘discussion.’
     The seven hens continued their scratching and pecking in the flower beds, seemingly oblivious of the eagles overhead.  The rammer continued his job of sponging out the cannon barrel prior to loading the charge (always a blank charge by strict THOM rules and regs).  He, too, was busy with matters more important than eagles.
     As General Nyel began the firing countdown, the onlookers, the firing crew, and even the rammer, put their fingers or earplugs in place.  It was harder for the hens, but they didn’t seem to care.  Perhaps their ears are insulated by feathers.  BOOM!  The crowd cheered!  The champagne flowed!   The seven hens, however, continued their scratching and pecking in the flower beds.  Not one of them even missed a beat.  Nice to know.  Stress-free hens must mean stress-free eggs and that must be a good thing…


  1. Vivian Wattum

    Sorry I missed the firing, what time is it scheduled for New Years? I am a member in good standing, I think, and so are my grandsons.

  2. Stephanie Frieze

    How cool is that, Sydney?? Sorry I wasn’t here for it and won’t be on New Year’s Day. I will be at the Olalla Bridge where they fire a cannon and silly people (such as my husband) jump into Puget Sound!


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