Armed with a charming demeanor and my zoning regulation printouts, I stormed the Township Hall this afternoon. Of course, by “stormed,” I mean I walked in and politely waited my turn. Anyone sharing my WASP-y upbringing knows I am forced to be excruciatingly polite with strangers, at least until they piss me off.
I asked to speak with Wanda, the woman I talked to yesterday. When she came to the counter, I immediately liked her; she’s a delightful woman with smiling eyes, a ruddy complexion and a down-to-earth, friendly manner. Approaching things in a, “could you please help me to understand what I’m missing” way, rather than a, “YOU ARE WRONG GIVE ME MY CHICKENS” sort of way, we had a very nice discussion, which resulted in some tentative, excellent news: “Oh… for some reason, I thought there was a restriction on anything less than 2.5 acres. Maybe I’m wrong!”
We are both hoping she is, indeed, wrong, because Wanda is also very keen on having chickens herself, and thought she was prevented from doing so by this ordinance. We bonded over chicken excitement and lifestyle shifts and what a lovely, lovely woman. I feel just terrible lumping her in with anyone who might have tried to impede our homesteady endeavors. She was going to look into how Ann Arbor had worded their legislation, in preparation for her lobbying when the Article comes up for review.
We looked over everything together, and neither she nor I could find anything that might restrict either of us. We’re not a platted subdivision, fortunately, and would certainly be within animal density regulations (I can’t imagine what we’d do with the eggs from 20 chickens, even if I might want a flock that large. Which I someday might. Shh.)
She took my phone number and will be calling me after she does some more research. Right now, all appears to be well – YAY! And if it’s not, if there needs to be lobbying done, Wanda – I am your girl, and I’ll make sure she knows this. I’ll be her research hound, her advocate and her meeting attender – you betcha. I want my chickens!
As I was leaving, feeling much relieved indeed, I had a minor wave of annoyance that she would have crushed my plans without fully checking her work. If I hadn’t done the research and spoken to her about this, had assumed she knew what she was talking about precisely, well – I’d be all bleary-eyed and tearful and dreadfully mopey for awhile.
I find myself wondering what sort of community work I could do in the Williamston area, what volunteer opportunities or group work stuffs might be about. Since I stopped going to school and volunteering at the Emergency Department, I haven’t done any volunteering or community-based work at all. I miss it. Thanks for renewing my interests, Wanda! You’re super-keen.
Newly-inspired, I went for the first time ever to Hobby Lobby.
But that will be an entirely other post. 😀