A new arrival

(Nick here, guest blogging while Frances is in Norway)

As I mentioned last week, poor Rosie, our chicken, had to be put down recently leaving her friend Cinnamon alone. However in our hunt for a new companion for Cinnamon we were put in touch with a man near St Albans who had a whole flock that he was downsizing, so we went to collect one from him. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Helga:

Why ‘Helga’? Well, as a light Sussex, her markings make her look like she’s wearing her own lopapeysa, so it had to be an Icelandic name. Our son, Joe, suggested Helga, and as I know three other people called Helga on Facebook, thought it might be a bit odd. So we considered various other names, including Henný, which IS a genuine name in Iceland, but that seemed far too obvious, so agreed that Helga was the way to go after all. (My three Helga friends were all amused by this).

Helga is a little less tame than Cinnamon, who has been kept as a pet since hatching. The breed is also known for being harder to catch than most other chickens, so we are prepared for some comical running around the garden after she’s had some free-ranging time. When we first got her, she was confined to her temporary quarters while we tried to get Cinnamon used to having her around

The look on Cinnamon’s face when she first met Helga was priceless. She stood stock still, and wouldn’t take her eyes off this suspicious new interloper. However after being introduced to each other like this each day this past week, they are now happy to wander around the garden together, even partaking of some brief communal preening at one point. And I think Helga is already getting a little protective of her new friend, as after I had picked Cinnamon up for a short stroke, Helga gave me a light peck on my hand as I set her down again, as if to say “leave my buddy alone, you!”

Anyway, please give Helga a warm welcome. She is already settled enough to lay every day, so we are now back to our complement of two eggs a day, meaning we can probably offer some to our neighbours again to keep them sweet.

Frances will be back with you tomorrow – many thanks to her for allowing me to spam you with my photos. I hope you’ve enjoyed the week, I’ve enjoyed your comments here and on Facebook. So for now, from me, Helga, Cinnamon, Archie, Fergus and the rest of the menagerie, bye!

17 thoughts on “A new arrival

  1. Shelley

    Tha nose for all the beautiful photos especially those of Harris and Lewis (on my bucket list)!

    Do you live on Shetland? I notice trees around your place!

  2. Margaret and Harry Robinson

    Thanks for keeping up the “Shetland experience”. You did a brilliant job and we both loved the photos. From our viewpoint, you can step in anytime Francis may need you!

  3. Linda

    THANK YOU for your engaging and beautiful blogging, Nick! (AND the gorgeous, gorgeous photos – both scenic and animal…)
    Best of luck to Cinnamon & Helga being good company for each other. 🙂

  4. Judith Garbutt

    Thanks, Nick – some stunning photographs and interesting prose. Hope you’ll be back next time Frances takes a holiday!

  5. Terri

    Hello to Helga! (and there’s that GORGEOUS Icelandic sweater yet again!) Glad the meet-and-greet with Cinnamon went well.
    Thank You Very Much for filling in for our beloved Frances, and I await her return, but I’ll really miss you! I wish you had your own personal blog too. I will follow your professional blog, but as far as I can tell, it doesn’t contain photos of your enchanting menagerie and stories about a guide in Iceland! All the best….

  6. Wendy from NY

    Loved your posts, enjoyed seeing your amazing photography! Frances has very good taste in friends! Thanks for entertaining her readers while she was away gathering blog fodder!

  7. Darby

    I have really enjoyed your posts. you are quite a talented photographer, and I have quite enjoyed meeting your family. Helga is a beautiful girl indeed!

  8. diane in northern wisconsin, US

    Thanks for all the great pictures and info this past week, Nick. I have certainly enjoyed seeing your beautiful pictures and meeting your animals too. It has been a pleasure! Hope Helga works out well with Cinnamon. Take good care of those cute guinea pigs too.

  9. Nancy

    Helga is so cute!
    I would have named her Henny, I love those obvious names!
    My pet canary was named, Bird. ha ha!

    Thank you for sharing your beautiful pictures and stories with us this past week!

  10. Sam

    Thank you for your wonderful photos and posts. And for introducing us to your animal family. Good luck with Helga. The peegs are adorable. Mostly, thank you for sharing parts of the UK with those of us “across the pond”!

  11. Louise Stopford

    Helga is beautiful – they have done so well to be getting along together this early on. I hate chicken introductions. When I was left with just one (Mary) I got 2 pullets and kept them separate for about 2 weeks. The first week Mary screeched the place down. Luckily things calmed down the second week and of course, now (9 months on), they are all the best of friends. It was, I found, a stressful experience so I think you have done really well. Have loved your blog and your photo’s and it has been the icing on the cake to have a chicken blog as your final one (chickens are my passion). Thank you for a wonderful, interesting week – have really enjoyed.

  12. Cathy

    Thank you Nick for all your wonderful photographs this week. I have so enjoyed meeting the Southern minions and all your other animals. (Love your dog). I do hope France’s will ask you to fill her blog space if she goes away again!


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