The Bloody Beak


Alas, there was more Life & Death in the Desert Drama today at Hacienda Dominguez & Chelenzo Farms.

Our two puppies have been accused of murder, because they were caught at the scene of the crime sniffing the body, but I think it’s the hawks holding the bloody glove - if only because that glove fits them well, being that I was an eyewitness to the first chicken slaughter here, when I caught the bird of prey red-handed or rather with a bloody beak.

Unfortunately, this time the victim was much younger - one of our frizzle chicks. Included in the evidence box here is the last known photo of the deceased before it died.

Not-so-coincidentally, I found a little astronaut floating in the rain water catchment barrel later that afternoon. The death of space mouse was likewise a good example of life and death here in the high mountain desert - this is the Galápagos Southwest, where guilty and innocent wildlife live and hunt and hide and drive Ford Broncos down the arroyos and sometimes get caught.

That said I picked up our dearly departed rodent by the tail and tossed it by a cactus. I knew eventually some other animal would make a meal out of it, and if my hunch was right, it would be the guilty bird circling above.

That said, Barker & Zeus, stand accused, because they like chasing the chickens and they got caught with a dead one in their nose…But as Christine Mckenna knows, “that’s not their style,” and I’ve got video of the hawks circling the house too.

Anyhoo, there be three frizzles left, along with the eleven out of 12 original chickens.

Plus, I think Sasquatch lives in Cerrillos, now. After experiencing the heat dome in Seattle he/she/they said “Fuck this, I’m moving where the sun shines 300 days a year and the mountain air is as good as it gets, even with smoke from 107 wildfires raging up and down the Southwest…”

Or at least I imagined I might encounter Big Foot when we drove 2 miles an hour in all-wheel drive up Horny Toad Road, coming home tonight. The roller coaster ride that this monster of a hill, along with some healthy servings of fine wine at the Crossed Sabers Ranch, spurred my vivid imagination.

Driving in pitch black up a treacherous and tumultuous road while slightly tipsy prompted me to anticipate the elusive cougar, and I’m not talking Santa Fe art-collecting divorcées either. We’re speaking of the mountain lion we heard a few times last week, or at least some big and intimidating creature that might suddenly cross our path, give us a nonchalant and “I-don’t care” glare and then just keep walking.

Anyway, the company and dinner and conversation were all wonderful this evening on the other side of the train tracks.

The giant cottonwoods and Russian olive trees that whisked about in the wind sounded like a soothing shower right outside the open dining room window behind me; the Fitzgerald cocktails and addictive hummus with peppers with Tapenade were marvelous; and the hosts were gracious and entertaining. All this helped us forget we had kids at home for a few hours, at least until “grammar school” was mentioned in reference to charitable endeavors.

Thus, we wrangled ourselves away to return to home-and-duty. We picked up the puppy poop that no one bothered to clean up all over the house, and then got ready for bed. I read a few pages of my Mezcal history book and then began composing my nearly-nightly musing.

Hence, here we are, and here we now finally go to bed. Goodnight, buenas noches, bon soir (or is it nuit?).

Oh, oh, did I mention that we finally planted half the seeds in our new garden; I added a red stone walkway leading out the front door and we also did some more clean up and organizing in The Shed too, today?

Post-scripte, the morning after:

I WAS WRONG…it appears that the dogs killed another frizzle just a few minutes ago. I came up from the garden and found both of them carrying it in their mouths together. Can’t blame them, seems like they are owning up to their promise. Now we know, looks like they’re staying in Vegas after all, now afraid to go back to LA.