Chickens I like. They do chicken things each day – scratching, clucking, dust baths, creating eggs – go to sleep and repeat. Sure, there is the occasional unrest but they sort themselves out and get on with their chicken lives.

There is no chicken manual they follow. No quality standards to adhere to. No words on the wall extolling the higher values they should aspire to – Trust, Integrity, Respect, Transparency…etc. They don’t need nice words on their chookhouse they have a way and they behave accordingly.

It seems that our lives are increasingly complex and it’s difficult to keep absorbing, learning, adjusting, understanding and responding to the ever-changing environment we find ourselves in. Division, derision, dishonesty, disaster, despair, disease, disharmony … are all typical of what has been going on in our community and the communal discourse throughout this year. At times it’s a challenge to know what to do. Yet at the base of all, like chooks, we have a way forward that we all know and can choose – kindness, being nice, honesty, inclusion and knowing that hope will always defeat hate. Sometimes we have to stop and remember the way.

So as 2022 draws nigh, and amidst the hustle and business that we associate with the end of the year, I like to think of what’s next. It would be nice to explore new frontiers, for people to be kind and for all to aspire to be heroic and rescue something; like books trapped in a bookshop or a discarded chair on hard rubbish.

Whatever your future aspirations I wish all the best for you and your family and hope you have a great festive season filled with fun and laughter.