Ugh. So Saturday afternoon I thawed out some of last year’s antelope, marinated it, and made some skewers with a few onions out of the garden (for Chuck) and with onions and tomatoes and zucchini for me. Three in the morning and my sweetheart is not well. I’m a little rumbly in the tummy, but he is Not A Well Man. It was very very sad. And a long night.
Morning strikes and he is still Sick Like Dog. He sits in the living room watching football and ignoring a cup of black tea while I go out back and feverishly enclose the vegetable garden in bird netting. Sometime during the Long Night, I decided that it must have been the onions. The chickens have been in that bed a lot, and because I was afraid of overcooking the very lean antelope, the onions weren’t as cooked as I’d have liked. They were crunchy. All night I had visions of germy chicken feet, and contaminated onions and so, despite Chuck’s conviction that it was the antelope, I went out and banished the chickens from the garden.
In the spring, when the ground is soft, I’ll have to continue the copper-pipe trellis I have around the perimeter of the other beds, but for now I have a very loving-hands-at-home bamboo fence covered in bird netting. And a “gate” made from a couple of old pieces of green epoxy-coated wire fence. It’s not pretty, but it works. Two days and no chickens in the garden. And I kind of like the enclosure — it’s sweet in there. Like the Secret Garden. I did find a sparrow caught in the bird netting this afternoon, but I got him out and tucked away the stray piece in which he’d caught himself.
And by this morning, the tide of unpleasantness seems to have subsided. But I feel terrible. Here I am, so-called food blogger, and I poisoned my beloved! My grandmother gave me food poisoning so many times as a kid that I think I’ve got pretty good antibodies, but really, I’ve never actually given anyone food poisoning before. I feel terrible. I don’t know if it was those germy chickens, but it can’t hurt to fence them out of the food crops. Sheesh. Tonight I think it’s going to be something plain, like pork chops and rice (and ripe tomato salad for me, the one who eats vegetables).