I adapt. What other choice do I have? Below-freezing nights and days, both outdoors and inside the cabin, when it gets up to forty degrees inside this cabin, I finally feel warm. When it got down to 12 degrees last night, I worried about Henry freezing to death.
Henry is the beautiful rooster my friend brought me almost a month ago. Two nights back, when the sleet started and Henry found a tree in which to roost, I sat around for a couple of hours on my couch, waiting for him to be in rooster dreamland. Around ten o’clock, bundled up, I put on a headlamp and went outside, the sleet coming down. I got to the tree where he roosted on one of the lower branches. The ladder I had carried out earlier needed steadying against the tree he was in; I was hoping he would not wake up. Stealthily, I climbed the ladder to the top rung, while clinging to the tree with my left arm. I managed to grab him by one of his legs with my right, gloved hand. Carefully stepping back down the ladder, rooster freaking out loudly, I threw an old towel over his drooping, wet feathers and held him close as I stepped back out of the woods onto the driveway. I trudged past the parked car, up the steps onto the cluttered porch, through the front door into the warm cabin, and into the cold junk room where I one-handedly grabbed a four-foot-long PVC pipe leaned against the wall. I balanced it between the tops of two shelves and placed Henry on it. He grabbed onto the pipe and was still. I went back into the warmer room and sat up for a while, listening for the cats to explore the scent of Henry in the back room. When I was satisfied they were not interested, I slept on the couch until I heard Henry’s first early morning crows. I kept him in the room until the morning was brighter and then I took him outside.
Last night, as the temperature dropped into the teens, I searched for Henry. He was hiding in a new place. I guess he did not wish to have his sleep disturbed again. I heard him crow early this morning. When I finally got up and looked outside, he was waiting at the porch steps for me to throw him some food. The animals’ drinking water froze solid last night. As I poured water into the pan, the cats and Henry approached to drink. I fed all of them cat food. I was glad to see they were all present.
If these animals can get through these frigid nights, I suppose I can, as well, even though I feel frustrated much of the time. The cats and Henry do not complain. They simply adapt. I take their lead; adapt.