The news of kind neighbors giving Clio asylum sent me rushing down the street. I knocked on the informant's door, and she politely showed me which house below might be serving as the foster farm.
Too impatient to walk my way down the hill and around, the children and I ran for the car, swerved out with intention and parked ourselves in front of the said house.
A polite older man answered the door in his bath towel and slippers, only making the fact that I was there to inquire about a missing chicken that extra bit more awkward. Before I could apologize and explain myself, the children ran off about the bird and he immediately called his wife to the door.
The woman explained how Clio had appeared in their yard the previous evening chased by a fluffy dog, and that the home's Dachshund had been confined to the garage in order to preserve the well-being of our chicken, which had spent the day in the garden foraging for earthworms and chewing on the vegetation, perfectly content.
After thanking her profusely for her kindness, we were off to restore the last of our flock to her rightful place.
A dinner party was still in the making, but with our chickens safely home and the sun mellowing behind the eucalyptus, there was serenity in the household. As I gathered up some eggs to drop off for our helpful neighbors, I wondered how I had ever gotten myself into such a predicament.