Thursday, 21 June 2012

We are parents!

taken with a mobile phone
For the past four days the science department has been looking after an incubator full of eggs. On Tuesday, one of the eggs began to shudder and tremble, and by lunchtime it had hatched into a chick, a sorry, wet, brown creature,  which was so exhausted by the whole effort it lay motionless on the floor for what seemed ages, before finally forcing itself upright.

This morning I visited to find a few eggs trembling in unison, like something in a Looney Tunes cartoon (I hadn't realised eggs really did that - I thought it was a visual metaphor). This evening they have all hatched and the chicks are wobbling around the incubator like impossibly yellow powder-puffs.  Each visiting student emerges from the room excited, shiny and as proud as any new parent. I of course have resisted pointing out the connection between their sweet little newbies and the chicken-and-rice which is served up in the school canteen daily, without fail.

I suggested we might keep them, thinking the experience would be very useful for all sorts of students (the bolshy and the bullied). But apparently we have foxes which would give them all heart attacks, even if they didn't catch and eat them. And who would feed them? (me). Where would we put them (in all the school's grounds)? I honestly can't be bothered to press the issue, having lost the frogs and newts we once had to the newly emergent sixth-form block. Another wasted opportunity - but perhaps better suited to the touchy-feely-ness of a primary school, where grades, although important, are seen as part of a child's development.


  1. I wonder where they'll go then, your chicks.

    I went into a tile shop today and was utterly beguiled (and distracted) by a bowl of tiny chicks the owner had rescued - they had suffered from a heat lamp falling on some of them, singing them, and were destined for snake food until she rescued them. She'll keep them in her garden and there they will stay, blissfully unaware of their sheer good luck.

  2. It's such a basic instinct, isn't it, to emotionally invest in the very young - and interesting that the very young are so attractive to us, and to their parents (even when physically they can be quite unappealing such as baby squirrels).

    How's everything in real-life'sville? no posts from you recently, hope you are not consumed by property-misery. You are doing something splendid there, you know!

    I was just reading about Rodney Archer's eighteenth-century house on Fournier St which has gas-light. I would love to visit him.