8/2/11

Goodbye Sarge

Sunset over the barn


It's a feeling I never get used to... the feeling that comes over me whenever I lose a member of my farm family. No matter how many animals I've lost (and believe me, it's been a bunch...) I still have a hard time wrapping my mind around the fact that they're gone.
Gone.
Even days afterwards I'm still counting heads and missing one....

Yesterday I lost one of my favorite hens in the whole world... Sarge.
Now just for the record, Sarge was no sweet cuddly chicken who loved to be picked up and held or made on over... but she was so unique and quirky it was laughable and this endeared her to me. She was odd-looking from the beginning; she had a huge comb that made you swear at first glance she was a rooster, and beautiful dark plumage around her head and neck that gave way to golden mottled feathers on her back and bottom. But it was her personality that made her such a hoot... almost like a drill sergeant she made the other hens walk the line. There was no question who was at the top of the pecking order in her coop, and if you tried to buck the system you were rewarded with a swift peck on the head. And when I came to the coop with treats, the other hens would gleefully come running while Sarge would cock her head to the side and glance at me with one eye as if to say, "this better be good."

I was so very sad when I found the pile of beautiful feathers she had left behind in her struggle with the predator, but I had to smile when I saw another pile... then another pile... I have no doubt she put up some kind of fight, and I had to chuckle when I pictured the predator thinking to itself that she was probably the toughest piece of meat it had ever tried to devour.
Her sister and constant companion Big Bird is very silent and still today... almost as if she is missing her and waiting for her to come back.

I started to post a picture of the feathers that were left behind, but then I thought, "no, that's not fitting enough for Sarge".... so instead I'll post my favorite picture of her- the way I will always remember her, with her head tilted and giving me the "look".


Sleep tight, Sarge..... you will be missed.

43 comments:

  1. DAMN THAT FOX--OR COON--OR WHATEVER IT WAS!!!!!!
    I am so sorry to hear this. So very sorry.....
    Paula, did you receive a package from me lately? Just wondering.
    ★Linda★

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  2. Super Sad Face...

    Lana
    www.FarmLifeLessons.blogspot.com

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  3. I am so very sorry Paula. How sad. Thank you for sharing about her personality and this cute pic.

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  4. I am sorry to hear about Sarge. I am like you. When we get a new dog I never look at it and think about "the" end. The cuteness just makes you forget all about it. Sarge was one tough 'ole bird!

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  5. Ahhh Shoot! I will miss seeing pictures and reading stories about Sarge too. I am sorry you lost your old girl. Believe me, you never get use to losing your farm animals/family. I hope you are feeling better my dear. Are you all healed up from the bite?

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  6. Oh Paula, I'm so sorry for your loss my friend:( I know how you feel, it's something you never get used to and certainly never gets any easier, they are family just like anyone else we love! sending you a great ((((((((((BIG HUG))))))))))

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  7. Aw shoot! So sorry to hear about Sarge. I hope she gave that varmint "what for" before she died!
    I know you'll miss her. The other hens won't quite know what to do! Who's going to take up her position? I guess they'll let you know. Sorry to hear about her, Paula...

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  8. Sweetie Sarge will be missed!
    She certainly had a unique and lovable personality.
    So sorry about Sarge!

    I certainly hope that you have no further troubles with predators!
    Sending out a hug to you (( ))

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  9. oh, i'm terribly sorry! damn varmint!

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  10. No matter how many animals we lose... they still have a place in our hearts. You would have to be a "real farmer" before that stops happening. I'm sorry Sarge is gone.

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  11. Hello Paula.. Sorry about Sarge.. She sounds like my kinda chick.. smile..
    Take care of your sweet self...

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  12. Dear Paula-
    This made me cry for two reasons-first, just because of the wonderfulness of Sarge....and second, because I lost my goose Cornelius yesterday too. She had been sick for 3 days, but yesterday was the worst, so we took her to the vet. I was there with her...I've cried too much, and I still can't believe it-just like you...It leaves such a hole in your heart...
    Titus and Sam are very lonely without her. Me too....
    I didn't want to be so selfish-just talking about me. I hurt for you too...
    Love, Debra

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  13. So sorry Paula. It's never easy to lose a favorite critter. They become part of your family. I'm glad she put up a good fight.

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  14. Soon as I saw the title in my 'blogs I follow update list,' I felt myself slump down. I was just over here the other day looking at your dearly departed pics on the side bar. Losing an animal is tough. I lost a yorkie pup 2 years ago and cried like a little girl.
    Blessings to you and the farm.

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  15. I find it hard to get another animal after having our only dog put down in his old age---quite a few years ago. I took it extremely hard. I realize that it's really best to look at the big picture---to give animals a home and love and take what they give back---haven't quite gotten there, tho. I give you credit for being one who can do just that. I'm sad about Sarge. I sure wish she would come out of the woods like your other chicken did, but I realize you know from the evidence that will not happen. Thanks for sharing.

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  16. So sorry to hear about Sarge
    Benny & Lily

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  17. Oh gal, I am so very sorry for the loss of your Sarge. I know its part of farm life but like you said they do become part of daily life and they each have personalities. God lift your spirits and comfort you.

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  18. Sweet Paula, I am so sorry. I know how you feel. Hugs to you. blessings, Kathleen

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  19. Big hugs from Alabama. Sorry to hear your sad news.

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  20. Danged old varmit! I totally understand your feelings. Let's remember Sarge the way she was,,,one tough chick-a-dee!
    Our condolences to you all. I'm sure that Lily Bell would let you rub her belly and that would make you feel better.

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  21. Sorry about your losing Sarge. It does take a while to realize "they're actually gone". I was feeding a calf on the bottle one time and when it finished, he gave a little cough and fell over dead. I worked with him, thinking he had just passed out, but to no avail. Death is strange to comprehend.

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  22. So sorry. I've always enjoyed reading the stories about Sarge. I'm glad she didn't go easy! RIP, Sarge!

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  23. So sorry Paula. To many critters around waiting to pounce. The same thing has happened to me, know how you feel..Susie

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  24. I'm so sorry for your loss my friend....Love to you...mare

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  25. Oh Paula, this is so sad...:(
    I'm so sorry! !

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  26. I am so sorry to hear this, Paula...its always hard to lost a favorite ..especially in such a way...glad she gave the predator a hard time....maybe you should get some live traps and catch whatever is doing this..send them far far away....

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  27. I'm sorry to hear about Sarge. It's so obvious that she was special in her own way and that you loved her.
    Patricia

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  28. Argh! Poor Sarge. Although it makes me happy that she appeared to have put up a fight.

    We lost Fred (our rooster) who was similiar to Sarge. He could be a pain in the rear, but he had funny antics.

    I'm glad someone else admits to it being hard when you lose an animal. I always feel like I should be hardened to that feeling by now and I don't think it'll ever happen!

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  29. I know that feeling too Paula. I get so attached to our farm animals here.
    We have so many varmints around here that just love chicken.
    Sarge was a real cutie pie.I know she will be missed.

    Pam

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  30. I am very sorry about Sarge. Nice post and tribute.

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  31. Beautiful tribute. My heart is sad for Sarge and for you.

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  32. I know just how you feel - Sarge is a good memory now. The end for one of our farm family is never what we would want for them.

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  33. OH PAULA!!!
    I am SO SORRY Sweet friend!! We loved her too! Damn Varmits!!
    Hugging you Girl!!!
    (((HUG)))

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  34. oh sad!!! we lost one of our new hens a couple of weeks ago....she was one of the top knot hens (polish) we names her Elizabeth Taylor because she had a big hat. :o) so pretty and the others chickens pecked her to death. stupid chickens!

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  35. Girl, I am so sorry bout Sarge.
    I felt your pain seeing those feathers. Do you have alot of coyotes?

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  36. Paula I am so sorry for the loss of Sarge.You would think our hearts would get tougher but it never seems to happen.I lost Polly my Polish Bantam hen yesterday ,so I understand what you are feeling.Dang predator! I think the heat got my poor lil Polly.Big hugs,Jen

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  37. Awww, I am sure it never gets easy. She had a loving home and a great life on your farm.
    HUGS,
    Melissa

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  38. Hi Paula...so sorry about Sarge, your sweet baby..that is so sad. We have had that happen too..two of our got killed by a sneaky, stinking skunk..so sad! We get so attached to these little critters and it really breaks our hearts.

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  39. I'm so sorry, Paula!!!! Being as old as I am and going through this over and over, I always have that little anxiety deep down inside because I know I will outlive my dog. . . and I'll no doubt have to go through this again. The whole thing stinks! I'm going to miss your stories about Sarge, for sure. Hugs and lots of love from Florida!!!

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  40. So sorry! I hate waking up to those scattered feathers - it's an awful feeling. I've taught my kids that it's just part of country life!

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  41. Paula that is so sad. I feel your loss.
    I haven't been blogging and I decided I had to stop by and say hi to you. I am still in Vegas with the kids, trying to get a divorce...it is dragging on and on. But I am doing okay.
    I miss everyone that I used to blog with.
    I have a new email address:
    antiqueisme@yahoo.com
    Ginger

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  42. Paula, I stumbled upon your blog, and love your farm animals, I only have 1 dog, three cats, 100,000 bees and 2 chickens.... sorry about Sarge...

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