Here we are: of all colors – brown, black, white, light brown, dark brown, orange, sprinkled — of all Shapes – small, big, skinny, voluptuous, ordinary — of all Characters – independent, aloof, social, cuddly, skeptical, curious, lazy, active — and of all Ages – from 5 months to more than 5 years and that is old for a chicken, be assured. We all get along fine, except for little fights over special treats and we used to lay those beautiful eggs of all colors but no more. Something happened gradually over several months and by the summer we all had stopped laying eggs. So sad, because the ladies who take care of us tried so hard to get us back on track with special treats – MacDonalds for chickens, they said. They took some of us on their lab, patted our feathers, fed us out of their hands but nothing worked. One of the ladies has a little helper, perhaps her granddaughter – you can see her on one of the photos with Ruby, a senior, perhaps even THE senior among us. We love that little girl but she didn’t succeed either. No eggs. Yup, thats true. It has been an unusually hard year for me and I tell you why.
I’m Audrey — like Audrey Hepburn, you guessed it. I look like her, they say, with the white top hat and the slim, elegant shape. I don’t know Audrey Hepburn, but if she looks anything like me she must have been beautiful. I have been around for almost 5 years and most of them with my beloved brother, the rooster in our family of ten. He picked me as his closest companion over all the other beauties in the coop. Good choice. We were an attractive couple, visitors took photos of us all the time. Max, like Maximum, that was his name. He died last winter all of a sudden. No slow ailing into nothingness. Just dead one day lying under the oak tree. I was devastated. Could not lay any eggs anymore. Would run around the garden looking for him. Stopped eating even the special treat that we got more often after Max had died. Perhaps to make us forget our Max but I’m still thinking of him with tears in my eyes. And I still run around, nervously, looking for him. My closest friends among the chicks, Iris, the black one, and Hilary all in white keep reminding me to slow down. Hilary and Iris are not really close friends, but our colors match – black and white and nothing else. It has been almost a year since Max left us and I can’t lay eggs anymore. Every other day I used to lay a perfect snow white egg and would get a special reward from him – he would surprise me by all of a sudden jumping on me and give me a big big hug. Max, I miss you so much.
HI I’M IRIS
So why do I not lay eggs anymore? I can tell you straight into your face. I don’t like what’s been going on this year. Max disappeared. Audrey, my sometimes companion, got depressed. All our helpers came with a diaper around their faces. Couldn’t recognize them anymore. And we loved to talk to them in the morning in Spanish, German, French while we were all still thinking of laying an egg. But that changed. With all the turmoil we had to go through I started loosing my precious feathers. I do have a lot of them, not like little Ruby, who really can’t afford losing any. (See this photo with the little helper, I think her name is Tessa.) But you could hardly notice the loss on my big black coat – only I did. And that was in the middle of the summer, not like winter when that usually happens. In any case, that’s why I stopped laying eggs. IT WAS A DIFFICULT YEAR FOR ME and, I think for my friends here too. But let’s listen to them and hear what Pumpkin and Hilary and Copper and the newcomers Sugar and Brownie have to say. They might also shed a bit more light on their sisters death shortly after they had joined us. So sad.
Hasta pronto – Bis gleich – à bientôt.