Every day or two I hear a rooster crowing from one of my neighbors yards. It’s not like I live in the boonies or wear plaid (often), but this town/city blurs the line between the middle of nowhere and a bustling somewhere.
Maybe its a trend, or a sign of the times — getting back to a grow-your-on mentality — but its certainly not uncommon for people to own a few chickens for eggs, a goat or a swarm of bees. They don’t live on farms, but maybe you could call them urban farms or eccentric households or dedicated foodies.
Hearing a rooster crow, oddly, isn’t new to me (or us). Every morning in a very Brooklyn neighborhood, we’d walk to the morning train to hear the same sound. Sure I could chalk it up to a local crazy, but it was actually a rooster. A rooster crows in Brooklyn, if you would believe it.
There was a poultry shop/slaughterhouse right near our old place. Every morning, we’d walk past the delivery truck filled with flat yellow crates and angry chickens. I think Kojak got upset by the site during his walks. Or, it might’ve been the smell. You couldn’t miss that smell three blocks away. That and the stray feathers pasted on the sidewalk and floating heavy in the thick wind. You’d catch their eyes on the walk passed and you could tell they knew what was coming. It never bothered me much. I can see what I’ll be eating and not cringe, but be happy I know it’s fresh. Not everyone can look at their future food (ahem Daniele/Kate).
I always threatened to serve Kate one of those very fresh birds. Just to get a rise out of her. 🙂 I can’t imagine if it tasted better than what was probably in the freezer for a week, then defrosted for four days in my supermarket. Not to mention, with “2% water” somehow injected into the meat. So, I’m paying extra for a drink with my chicken dinner, I guess. I’d take the chicken eye contact pre-dinner over a mass produced, corn fed robot any day. Of course, in Brooklyn, I wouldn’t exactly consider them free range.
Still, it’s weird to hear a rooster crowing anywhere. Growing up near shopping malls, strip malls, department stores and a distant beach hardly hints at a future in farm noises. At best your neighbors dog wakes you up again. And again.
It’s a welcome change to pick my own lettuce for dinner and watch my cucumbers grow from little cornichon impersonators to grocery store-worthy produce. I can’t say how long we’ll be here, living with the neighbor’s rooster crow, my raised bed of green things or my home office view of it, but I’d take the sound of the living thing over that of its future you-know-what any day.
As for whatever comes next, I can only plan as far as dinner and I’m pretty sure I know what I’ll be making.