Aberdeen passes resolution hoping to halt closing of DP&L coal fired power stations Aberdeen Council to go after delinquent income taxes Ripley’s Tree City, USA committee receives $3,000 grant, prepares for Arbor Day A season to remember G-Men hit the field for first baseball scrimmage Eastern’s Rigdon, Purdy earn AP SE District Div. III honors New blocking, kicking rules address risk minimization in high school football Judy A Schneider James M Darnell Lawanda R Truesdell Paul E Grisham Arrelous R Rowland Dennis E Stivers David M Daniels New 1st Stop has grand opening in Ripley Library to focus on historic floods Students perform at Farm & Family Night In it to win it! Bronco wrestlers end season on successful note Eastern’s Hopkins finishes 5th in long jump at OATCCC State Indoor Track and Field Meet SBAAC awards academic all-stars, winning teams Marvin D Atkin Beverly S Flatt Jessie M Sanders Leroy Deck Sr Jody A Towler Sherman E Young Kenneth C Burton Aberdeen welcomes new fiscal officer Fatal car crash in Adams County Ripley missons group to have fundraiser OVM recognizes retiring asst. admin. Royce K Zimmerman Lady Warriors advance to Elite 8 SBAAC awards boys basketball all-stars SBAAC girls basketball all-stars take home awards SHAC Winter Sports Awards Banquet set for March 12 Altman claims 170-pound district title Sirkka L Buller Arthur C Schneider Lowell G Neal Virginia M Schirmer Connie S Darling Harold L Purdin Lucille Schumacher Terry E Frye Lady Warriors roll to district finals Broncos take care of business to claim sectional crown G-Men upset MVCA to earn berth sectional finals WBHS JROTC Rifle Team competes at Camp Perry Lady Rockets finish 12-12 Season reaches end for Rockets Eugene D Ring New water lines open soon in Ripley RULH celebrates Black History Month Goat receives smooch from teacher Ripley Library to remember floods Robert G Miller Linda M Howland Robert E McKinney Mildred J Hodges Farrel L Amiott Patricia Brown Rick L Dye Mary E Nagel Betty Ratliff Broncos claim SBAAC wrestling title Broncos pull ahead for win over G-Men in SBAAC Tourney Ripley boys wrap up regular season with win at Lynchburg Eastern girls are sectional champs RULH Board meets, planning session set New LIDAR technology in Ripley begins St. Michael School announces Science Fair June Howser Marguerite A Fender Timothy D Harris Jay R Purdy Robin S Godwin Marc A Wachter Chester W Eyre Warriors blast past the G-Men, 61-40 Rockets performing well heading into post-season tournament play Lady Warriors bring home the Gold with perfect 13-0 finish in SHAC Western Brown Junior High wrestling team wraps up successful season Rockets fall victim to ‘Pack’ attack Broncos suffer heartbreaking loss to Mentor Lake Catholic in state quarterfinals Ripley PD busts key figure in BC drug ring “Prom Dress Resale Shop” at RULH High Small wooden replicas of Ripley Church and organ now available Billie L Shoemaker Erma J Teeters Ralph L Tracy Darrell Inskeep Jeffrey C Clark Carole Metzger Tommy R Ring Brent A Arn Daniel L Sellers Lady Warriors finish regular season as SHAC Division I champions Regular season comes to a close for Lady Rockets

Ducks are edible

Nothing in the world is certain, but life certainly is precious. At first our three new ducks stayed close by their duck house, and did not venture very far into the upper field, but as the days turned to weeks, and they grew more familiar with their surroundings, we would find them waddling farther and farther across the field. Finally they followed the chickens into the woods and headed down towards the creek.

Every evening they would return, the largest of the three always in the lead, and settle down in their house, and I would latch the door safely behind them, until one evening when the middle sized duck did not return. I waited until well after dark to latch the door, hoping that he would come back home, but he did not. The next day I still hoped to see him waddling up out of the woods, but he was nowhere to be seen. I even hesitated to let the other two ducks out, but they seemed impatient to head off into the day, so I unlatched the door and off they waddled.

The next evening only one duck returned at dusk. Again I waited to latch the door, hoping for the others to return, but my hopes were hopeless. The chickens all settled into coop, jostling for the best perch. The pigeons tucked themselves into the top of their gazebo palace, and it was well after dark when I walked out into the field to latch the duck house behind the last of my three feathered waddlers. I fell asleep, saddened with the knowledge that I had failed to keep my ducks in a row.

The next morning I cautiously opened the duck house door. My little survivor waddled out into the day, gently quacking. Several of this spring’s chickens pecked and scratched at the grass close by. The little duck waddled over to join them, shaking his beak back and forth across the ground as only ducks do. I kept a close eye on him all day, and all day he stayed close to his house, joining the chickens when they would stop by, but not hurrying off with them when they dashed away. Several times I thought that I had lost sight of him, only to realize that he had hunkered down in front of the rabbit hutches, looking like a dried branch that had fallen from a tree.

I went out to check on him several times during the day and every time I suggested that he stick close to home and not wander off. I began to call him Stick, as much after the branches on the ground, as my hope that he would stay close by, and close by he thankfully stayed.

And then the lady who gave us the ducks called. She wanted me to know that she had new hatchlings looking for a home, and of course I told her “yes”. When I picked up the box of nine diminutive black ducklings, I told her the sad tale of Stick’s companions. She reminded me that ducks are quite edible.

So I brought the hatchlings home and set them up inside an enclosure out by the goats. I sat down on a log that I placed beside them and I watched as Stick watched them curiously. Whenever a dog or chicken would wander by, he protectively quacked, as if to say “These are my kin”.

I watched as the newcomers scurried about their new home and then finally settled down inside a cardboard box that I placed inside Stick’s house. Stick squatted down close by the box. A dark brown chicken pecked the ground by my feet. A bright red cardinal flew down and sat on the duck house fence. One of my pure white pigeons walked across the bright green grass toward me, ruffled her feathers, and flew back to her mate in the coop.

Perhaps Stick will teach his duckling kin to stay close by the upper field, and swim safely in the ponds we create, and not wander off into the wilds of the creek. I wonder how many creek creatures know that ducks are edible. I imagine that it is quite a few.

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