Winter chores....oh the drudgery. I moan and groan when I have to bundle up and go out in the dark, cold, night but once I'm out there I enjoy the clucking chickens, babbling geese and muttering Muscovies. The air is refreshing and the diamond dusted, snow covered landscape is so mystical. I always feel close to God when I'm out there... communing with nature and the my feathered friends...loud needle scratching.... HELLO! UGH! How many times is that dang duck going to run a round the coop before it goes in...I ask myself as I'm running after it thinking of how good duck soup would taste right about now. My fingers and toes are numb and throbbing! I take my gloves off and blow heavily on my blue fingers (puff-puff-puuuff!)...and whats up with suddening having to pee in the middle of chores? Run back to the house, take off my boots, RUN to the john...AHHHH!!! Old dogs look at me like I'm nuts. Young one thinks I'm playing with her as I run by and I trip over her as shes dances around my feet. Boots back on, wade through the snow, down the long, dark path, (of course, I left my flashlight in the house)..geese are screeching for their food, ducks are fighting....the water is frozen solid in the buckets. I stomp-stomp-stomp on the buckets...out it finally comes out...a perfect, pail shaped, block of ice! By spring I have quite an impressive mound of them. I fill the water buckets, fill the feeders, drain the water out of 100' of hose over the limb on the old pine tree (why am I so fat when I do all this work everyday???). I trudge back to shut the doors and turn off the lights...all is well. Crops are bulging, sounds of contentment fill the air. I hang my arms over the stall door and the geese nibble on my fingers. I ask how their day went. As usual the geese have alot to say, always interupting each other as they fill me in. No complaints from the ducks as they eye me with that mistrustful look. The chickens sit all poofy on their roost trying to ignore me. I head back to the light of the back door and seek out the wood stove to thaw myself out after pull off my poopy boots and peel off my soaking wet jeans... Ah, the joys of winter chores!