Eggs and chickens – who knew?
By By Leada DeVaney
I never considered myself much a city child until I moved to North Alabama. Apparently, Birmingham is a world away from here.
This all came home to roost, so to speak, last weekend when my friend Greg and I went to the Lacon Flea Market. He hadn't been there in many years and I hadn't ever been.
"I want to go," I said, thinking it would be sort of a craft show kind of place.
"If you really want to," he said with a laugh.
Off we went.
We arrived late in the afternoon. I later learned this was our first mistake. There were few people around, and those that were looked tired and more than a bit dusty.
The wind blew a bit and suddenly I was overcome by, shall we say, an odor.
"What in the world is that?" I asked.
"It's the smell of a goat," Greg said.
Goats smell? Who knew?
We walked to the back, passing mounds of old tires, worn out car parts and some clothes that last saw the light of day in the 1970s. As we walked, we were serenaded by the sound of roosters crowing and ducks quacking.
"I want to go see the chickens," I said. "I've always wanted a chicken."
In the back of the flea market were cages filled with all sorts of animals – chickens, ducks, guinea pigs, goats and even a turkey.
The chickens fascinated me. I thought all chickens were white, sort of the generic version you see on television. Here, there were chickens of all different colors and persuasions – it was a virtual fowl United Nations.
In one of the cages, there was a dark brown spotted chicken with a red plume on her head. She was just walking around, doing whatever chickens do, when I spotted a small, brown egg.
An egg. And a chicken. Right beside each other.
"Greg! There's an egg by that chicken," I said, attracting more than a few looks from the chicken sellers.
"That's what chickens do," he replied. "They lay eggs. Where did you think eggs came from, the grocery store?"
Well as a matter of fact, yes. I mean, I knew in some sort of fashion eggs came from chickens, but I never thought I'd actually be there to see the whole process occur.
What's next? Seeing someone milk a cow? Lassoing a horse? Plucking a goose?
It's just too much for the mind to handle.
We left Lacon shortly after seeing the egg and the chicken.
"Well, what did you think?" Greg asked.
"It was OK," I replied. "Just don't expect an omelet any time soon. I feel way too close to things now."