Silent Companions

Today the light was dull; the weather warm and dry.

This afternoon we visited Ferndene Farm shop to buy pork for tonight’s dinner.

I joined a young lady happily photographing chickens on her phone. We had noticed that she had chosen a good vantage point. It was a matter of seconds before I discovered that she had no speech and couldn’t understand me. Her carer approached and told me what I had already gathered and that she loved chickens. I said that perhaps she wouldn’t mind me continuing. That was the case and we became silent companions for a while.

I then sought out the resident pigs in order to reassure myself that we would not be eating them.

We continued on through the forest, taking an unnamed lane alongside which refuse had been dumped. At least it had been bagged up;

as had these drink cans on Braggers Lane.

If you are going to dump old fridges on the verges of Fish Street, I suppose you wouldn’t bother to wrap them.

Further along Fish Street we encountered a pair of inquisitive goats, the Billy of which sported a splendid beard.

This evening, when the sun emerged, Jackie went into the garden to plant some bulbs. Nugget kept getting under her feet, so she gave up and photographed a few garden scenes, including

this area she had planted yesterday;

honesty, rudbeckia, and Japanese anemones;

the lawn, eucalyptus, and hanging baskets;

the decking and its planting;

Florence sculpture, petunias, and nicotiana.

Oh, and “Where’s Nugget?” (13).

Later this evening we dined on Jackie’s spicily piquant pork paprika and toothsome mushroom rice with which she drank Hoegaarden and I drank Hardy’s Chapter and Verse Shiraz 2018.


  1. I see that, before he goes and plays peek-a-boo with Jackie, Nugget is learning to read. Is there no end to his cleverness! Those goats look particularly well groomed and rather handsome!!

  2. It appears you had a beautiful conversation with a stranger over some chickens πŸ˜‰ and oy! to those individuals who liter. That is something I just don’t understand.

  3. How sweet that you have a little robin that is so tame, you even gave it a lovely name! Your garden looks great as usual too Derrick. Some day soon I will also have to catch up with my own garden. And I will be back to blogging regularly soon too. Cheers, Agnes

  4. I like how you and the young woman were “silent companions” watching the chickens. My former midwife raises chickens now that are actually therapy chickens. Those goats are very cute, but not as cute as Nugget!

      1. I had never heard of therapy chickens before either. She told me that kids (or older people) are sometimes afraid of dogs or cats, but most, unless they grow up on farms, don’t have associations with chickens. She brings hers to events–they’re very gentle, and the kids can pet them while she holds them.

    1. As I’m sure you know, a garden is never finished, I love that things evolve continually. I find myself concentrating on one part of the garden each year, to the detriment of the other sections, as the truth is this garden is a wee bit too big for me to manage, but that is good as it gives me a goal each year.

  5. I’m quite fond of chicken paprika, but I’ve never tried pork. It seems a splendid idea, actually, especially since I can get pastured pork that’s just wonderful. I finally gave in to curiosity and went digging through some greeting cards I’d saved. Sure enough — a Christmas card from a friend in England featured one of your lovely robins on the front: dare I say a nugget of avian beauty?

  6. I was thinking, perhaps there is a language unknown to us in the motions of the chickens as if in a silent movie that speaks eloquently to the lady. Steaks of sunlight near the eucalyptus look inviting. Mr Nugget is yet again placed almost in the middle in the quiz. He is hidden well but his eye is a big giveaway.

  7. I’m so glad Jackie is in the world! Each day she makes the world even more beautiful! πŸ™‚
    That Nugget is such a good helper! πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰ (Wink Wink! πŸ˜€ )And I spied him peeking out with his little eye! πŸ™‚
    I’m so glad you are in the world, Derrick! Each day your words and photos bring joy and smiles! πŸ™‚
    HUGS to you and Jackie!!!
    TWEETS to Nugget!!!
    PS…Those goat faces just get to me every time! πŸ™‚
    PSS…Often, even in silence, we share so much with the companions around us! πŸ™‚ What a beautiful encounter you had with her, her carer, and those lively chickens! πŸ™‚

  8. Are chicken scratchings as tasty as pork scratchings, i wonder? πŸ˜‰

    Kudo’s to Jackie for her wonderful photos today, Particularly of her adorable, if mischievous, garden assistant,who seems to enjoy Where’s Nugget? as much as we all do! He did his best to make it a hard challenge today! πŸ™‚

  9. I hate it when people litter – they prove just how lazy they are.
    Maybe Jackie could gradually train Nugget to land on her shoulder and then he wouldn’t be underfoot all the time?

  10. Oh! That was a good Where’s Nugget? He’s actually hiding! The beard on that goat is truly remarkable. I know some hipsters here in Portland who would be envious. Most of all I loved those chickens. They are all beauties. I was thinking that I could never name that bunch. They all look alike and I’d never keep them straight, ha ha.

  11. I see the wee lad, playing peek-a-boo … just had a thought … you and the Head Gardener could be grand-bird-parents if Nugget does what birdies do in the ensuing months. πŸ˜€

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