Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Turkey Tribute

This is the tough day, the day we take the  turkeys to be harvested.

We got up at 6 a.m. this morning to  gather the birds from the coop while they were still groggy. We put them in great-dane-sized kennels, 3 or 4 to a kennel, hoisted them into the back of the pickup, and drove them to West Concord to be processed.
The  first year that Cadence wanted to raise turkeys I was  hesitant --I envisioned they would be  messy and mean.  Well, they are a bit messy in the coop, but  they groom themselves meticulously and they are so good-natured.  They are curious birds,  exploring the car if you leave a door open and interested in everything inside the grocery sack if you set it on the ground. Because we are the source of all things tasty, they all come running to meet us in their funny lock-kneed gait whenever they see us. Now I can't imagine a summer without a cast of turkey characters.
Our turkeys are probably a bit bigger than ideal this year, but we wanted them around for the Cow Puja. The children were delighted by the gentle giants. The turkeys seemed to revel in the attention, too.
This, our fourth year raising turkeys, was the first time I didn't burst into tears delivering them to the processor. Well, my eyes did well up a bit, but I know these birds had the most idyllic life imaginable for a turkey and I am proud to know they will make nine families a spectacular and delicious Thanksgiving feast. 


Gardeningbren said...

This was so touching. We pick our turkey up tomorrow raised as yours were..perhaps not as loved but this, I don't know. I hope so.

Anonymous said...

We hatched, raised, and butchered our turkeys this year, was our 1st
year raising turkeys. It was a sad
day when we butchered but we know
they had a good life. We are keeping 4 thru the winter to breed
for next year.