Sunday, January 5, 2014

Turkey wrangling and other such snow emergencies

Fulton County Ohio is currently in a "level 2 snow emergency".  Lucas County (the county that Chris works in) is currently in a "level 3 snow emergency."
It's 7:00p on Sunday night of the most recent snowpocalypse.
My first ever official "level anything" snow emergency.  Sure, I've heard of these things. I remember clearly while living away from here talking to my folks on the phone and they'd say "well, we're in a such-n-such snow emergency" and I'd say, "what's that?"  Which of course is when I learned of such things. But now I know first hand what these things represent. 
For those of you who are's the low down.
LEVEL 1: Roadways are hazardous with blowing and drifting snow. Roads may also be icy. Motorists are urged to drive very cautiously.
LEVEL 2: Roadways are hazardous with blowing and drifting snow. Roads may also be very icy. Only those who feel it is necessary to drive should be out on the roads. Contact your employer to see if you should report to work. Motorists should use extreme caution.
LEVEL 3: All roadways are closed to non-emergency personnel. No one should be driving during these conditions unless it is absolutely necessary to travel or a personal emergency exists. All employees should contact their employer to see if they should report to work. Those traveling on the roads may subject themselves to arrest.
Chris is an RN. And medical professionals are of the few who fall under the "emergency personnel" category, therefore she drove to work today through Fulton County's level 2 and smack through Lucas County's level 3. Her description of driving conditions, "I have to stay in tire marks to stay on the road and it is throwing me around and I can hear snow scraping under my car."  Nice. (She did make it safely into work.) And I will take this moment now to say, "SUPER KUDOS to all you medical professionals out there who have to drive through this nonsense!"

Then there's the turkey wrangling.  

Our chickens are pretty smart when it comes to snow on the ground.  Stay in the barn until no more snow. Maybe turkey feet are designed to handle colder temps? Don't know. But chickens don't seem to like tip-toeing around in the snow. But I digress. Our turkey hen seems to like to lay on the ground overnight, while the Tom turkey roosts up along the top of the fenceline surrounding the chicken yard.
It's supposed to get stupid cold tonight...not to mention all the snow falling...and neither of the turkeys have enough sense to take advantage of the open barn door and seek shelter inside. So, Rache to the rescue.  pahah!
Off I go trudging through snow up to my shins to coerce the turkeys indoors. So visualize this...I'm 5 foot 3. Tom turkey is roosting on a fence that's above my head. He likely weighs 25 pounds....and has a long neck...and a BIG beak.  I'm looking up at him and thought that my mere presence in his face would encourage him to fly down, be next to his girl and easily wander into the barn.  pffft.
I reached out and pushed him. He hissed. Not a good sign. Then I thought, well, if I can avoid provoking him, push him hard enough to lift his feet off the fence, then he'll take flight and soar down next to his girl.  (who knew, apparently turkeys have better balance and finesse than chickens...this would have worked with chickens)
Not so fast. I poked and pushed him no less than 6 times. By the 6th time I started getting pecked at.  Apparently he was very happy with his evening nest and had no intention of leaving it without a struggle.
Long story short...he did finally fly down off the fence and then I had to chase him all over the yard before he finally waltzed into the barn. When I saw my boot tracks in the snow it made me laugh. All OVER the back yard. Yep, evidence shows I wrangled a turkey. Yeah! I win!!
Guess we shall see what happens tomorrow morning when I have to open the barn door back up.

Oh and driveway shoveling update.  Third time complete. Back and arms getting stronger as we speak!

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