Sunday, January 6, 2008
One of the treats of the December holiday season is the hunt for a suitable feast item. Traditionally, when I was growing up, this had meant shopping for a turkey at the supermarket. Now that we're so much better informed, the hunt has new parameters, in particular, finding a bird which has not spent its life in a cage, not been fed a diet of food laced with various 'enhancing' chemicals and so on. For the past few years, we have made arrangements to get our turkeys from a farmer who raises birds in as natural a setting as possible, outside, eating chemical-free food. Of course, his operation has been attacked and fined by controlling government agencies for his trouble and intelligence, but thankfully, he persists, encouraged by people like ourselves.
In recent years, global warming has brought a new option to our doorsteps. In the pictures above, you can see these new immigrants casually browsing on the bushes at the foot of our front lawn: wild turkeys! At this point, we're not allowed to harvest these delicious looking birds, but things happen, don't they?
When our children were small we raised two domestic turkeys each year. When one of them chased our teen-aged baby-sitter into the house, we began to think raising big birds might be dangerous for our children so we began the arrangements I spoke of earlier. Now we have grown up children and wild turkeys strutting about the place, we find our horses being threatened! They've broken out twice in recent weeks, scared to death of these marauding fowl. I'm beginning to think self preservation could easily put a couple of birds on our table next year.
If you're wondering what any of this has to do with kayaking, well, keep in mind that kayaks are really hunting craft...