I've gotten chicks from several different sources now, and I've all but decided that the best method is to watch craigslist for local breeders. (One time I ended up paying a bit too much, but--on the whole--it's cheaper and I've gotten better birds than the time I ordered from a hatchery.) This year I wanted Ameraucanas, because of their pretty blue eggs. With a nice looking farm duly located, last night I set out to pick up two birds.
The farm was way out in some of the prettiest country. With my GPS telling me where to go, I couldn't help but let my eyes drift off the road to the old barns, rolling hills, and utterly content cows. It was heaven.
After stopping to pick up the new ladies--one a lavender, one more grey--I hit "reverse directions" on my phone as I pulled back out onto the dirt road to get home. "Data signal has been lost," my phone replied in that dreadful generic phone voice.
"Well, I'll just go back the way I came...surely I can remember," I thought, even through it was starting to get dark and the roads were so twisty that I wasn't even sure which direction home was.
[Brief digression: When I was a tween, Nice Dad used to make me read the map when we went on road trips. I would have rather been reading a book or listening to my discman (shush!), but at least once or twice a year I mentally thank him for it. You wouldn't believe how many otherwise smart people can't navigate from a map, and it's a dead useful skill.]
From which, as you might guess, I did get a bit lost and had to pull over and look at the map. But I had already corrected course when Sweet Husband texted, "Are you still alive?"
[Second brief digression: When you're buying chickens from strangers off of craigslist and you're gone longer than expected, you really should call your husband and tell him you haven't been robbed and left for dead.]
Regardless of the detours, however, Amy (the grey) and Emily (the lavender)--henceforth "The Indigo Girls"--were brought home safely. They're about 10 weeks old, so hopefully they'll start laying in late July or August. For now we're keeping them separated from the flock-proper, both for disease prevention and because I'm not sure how they would react to the babies or how the babies' mama would react to them. Eventually, we'll start some supervised introductions, but for now the Indigo Girls are enjoying having the run of the garden.