And so for the last couple of days, still exhausted after two days of hauling in over a thousand palamithes (small tuna) in the trata nets, Stelios started to build a kotetsi, a chicken house.
He'd recently spent a couple of days carefully constructing a wooden dog house for Lisa out of reclaimed wood he'd found mostly washed up on beaches, so he could build one like that. She hadn't been in there yet, but we assumed when she was old enough and it was warm enough outside...
There again, we weighed up the likelihood of this dog - who will sneak up on our bed at any opportunity - ever taking to a 'dog house'. There was more likelihood of us sleeping outside in it. Job done - one ready-made chicken house.
Tilos doesn't have any foxes, so there are no ground predators; but the crows and the eagles will go for a chicken, apparently, so the run had to be sealed in well overhead. And, because the chickens would be in the field where we plant all our vegetables and trees, they'd need a strong fence to keep them around their coop. He was just finishing it all off as the sun went down last night.
The chickens aren't new-borns so they would probably be fine overnight, but we were still a little anxious to know they'd survived the night in their new home. It was a cold, windy night (how windy? the Dodecanese Express boat managed to stop at Tilos yesterday, but broke a rope doing so, and everyone on board was sick...) So we all went down to our field en famille first thing this morning. Lisa was jumping up and down with excitement that we were all going off on an excursion together.
The chickens were as right as rain in their new home under the shade of a big old tree. And what a home! He's not just a pretty face, Mr Fisherman-Kantina-Man-Chicken-Farmer.
We brought Lisa inside while we fed the chickens. As long as dogs learn young, apparently, they won't harm the birds. We needn't have feared: she was more interested in eating their food.
I admired the fig tree and the grape vines with their new leaves, and picked some rocket and onions and carrots from the garden for today's salad, and walked back home in my wellies. Our own fresh eggs soon? Countryfile Greece, indeed.