My list of everything that went sideways.
1). For weeks Steve has reminded me that the turkeys were going to be processed on Thursday, July 12th. On Tuesday, July 11th, at 6:00 p.m., Steve realizes that the 12th actually falls on Wednesday…..like the next day, Wednesday. We have had this appointment for a couple of months and there is no flexibility; have them processed on the scheduled day or wait for the next opening. So there we were, in the pouring rain, with lightning bolts so close I could feel them, scrambling to hook up the stock trailer and get everything ready for the very early departure the following morning.
2). The alarm went off at 5:00 a.m. because we had an 8:30 appointment and the processor is a 2:45 minute drive away. I somehow convinced myself that loading the turkeys would be a breeze because they are food motivated; dangling a bucket of feed in front of them and then leading them into the trailer would be super simple. I was so convinced, in fact, that I put on “cute clothes”, because I don’t get out much and maybe we would find a quaint little restaurant in rural Kingstree, SC for lunch. Stupid, stupid, stupid.
3). Steve and I went out to load up the turkeys. Y’all, it is f-ing pitch black at 5:15 in the morning. As Steve opened up the turkey pens they all looked at him like he was crazy. “It’s the middle of the night dude. We will chill in here until sun up if you don’t mind”. So I climbed into the pens in my super cute clothes to shoo them all out. They tripped and staggered in the darkness as they tried to follow Steve’s voice, while I stomped around the layer of turkey shit in cramped quarters shoving turkeys out the door.
4). Turkeys are wary of anything unfamiliar; even introducing a new feeder can freak them out. Hmmmmm, did I really think they were going to jump on into a trailer that they have never seen before in the early dawn just because I am holding a food bucket!? Yeah, not happening. I got in the trailer with the bucket of feed while Steve tried to corral and coax them. I asked Steve for his phone so I could take a picture. He glared at me, started swearing about being behind schedule so this was no time for a photo op then he stomped away and tripped for the umpteenth time on the poultry-netting fence. He started swearing again. No, he did not give me his phone.
5). Realizing that it had been over 30 minutes and we had managed to coax only five turkeys into the trailer, we needed to devise a new plan. We corralled the remaining 21 back into their night pens. I crawled in with them, in my super cute clothes, mind you, because Steve is too tall to fit. I then started grabbing those 40-pound turkeys; one for Steve, one for me, so we could carry them to the trailer parked about 20 yards away. I could feel the wet on my arms and legs and hoped it was just the morning dew on their feathers, but I knew it was turkey shit. Super cute clothes no more.
6). We bounced our way down the country highways because every damn stretch of roadway was under construction. I was sweaty, stinky, with telltale crap stains on my once super cute clothes. Stray turkey feathers that were attached to the turkey shit on my shirt occasionally broke free and floated through the pick up.
7). Drop off complete. Was I really delusional enough to think there was going to be a quaint little restaurant in bumble Kingstree, SC?! Did it even matter? “Super cute” was no longer a term I would use to describe how I looked. It was now 2:00 and we were both tired and hungry. Steve pulled into a Dairy Queen because we agreed that a DQ Blizzard would help our foul mood. The teenage girl at the counter informed us that some machine exploded so they were closing.
A fitting end to the day.