~In jeder Sprache wohnen andere Augen.~ ~I don't know where I am going but I am on my way.~

lundi 3 octobre 2011


One of my first e-mail exchanges with EG, the love of my life, my real dream man, had the title Hühnerkacke. (Why that was, is another story ;-))

What, if he had known then, that many many moons later on a Sunday evening in October he would be worn out, sweating, dirty from top to bottom, two fingers badly damaged by continuous hammer banging on those fingers instead of hitting the head of the nails , suffering from aching knees and deprived of a lovely Indian Summer weekend with gorgeous warm sunshine---all that for some Hühnerkacke instead?

I wonder if he would have given our relation a chance then. Because this weekend was another challenge to fullfil one of my longest awaited dreams to come true. Getting a sound home for some « poules de Herve » before Sunday 18.00 h, the deadline when they had to be collected from a breeder who was very keen to get rid of them before winter.
But I better start at the beginning of some exciting moments.

He went to a business trip to Salzburg beginning of the week and this Sacher Torte was from one of his customers. We had some delightful bits on Friday to start a lazy weekend.
Then came the roofer to start to dismantle the roof.

Saturday was blue ribbon day, so balmy. We were captured by the sweet colours of Autumn.

The grilli kota got new coats of wood treatment.

The Saltire, Scottish banner, matched perfectly the colour of the sky.
But the deckchairs stayed deserted.

Poor EG had hardly anything of it, he started to use some bits of wood from the piggery’s roof.

And plenty of mesh was nailed on the frames for to protect the babies.
Because the main issue is to keep them alive until they die of old age whilst plenty of predators are lingering around the farm. We want to avoid at any price to have repeated the sad end of our poor geese. I hope we learnt from our mistakes and those chicken are going to be safe inside the shed every night.

The chocolate dog is highly intrigued by all this concoction or is it cocotte-ion…
He will have to learn another lesson, that those chickens are nice and also belong to us.

The breed ‘poule de Herve’ is a very ancient local race and they are descendent from the gaelic hen, la Gauloise. In local dialect, they are called ‘li neure poie di pai’ means the black hen of the country. These hens have a very well developped instinct and would stay save high in the trees overnight, if left with feathered wings. Three colours of coat are regularly admitted : jet black, blue and coucou (brownish, called ‘cotte de fer’). Our cockerel is black as is one hen, three others are blue (this more grey-ish coat is called Mauheid) and three ladies are whit-ish which is due to their blue (Mauheid) father and a mother of the same colour. However, whilst the colour is not admitted, they have still the caracteristics of poules de Herve and should lay plenty of nice eggs by the end of the month.

Allo, Allo! Here are our main caracters :

Our rooster is called René Artois and he is a true Coq de Herve as one can see on the picture here below.
Whilst his black coated wife in the front is Edith Melba.
The blue coated gal on the right is Madame Fanny La Fan.

This white lady on the left is Yvette Carte-Blanche – (she has nothing to do with our neighbour of the same name ;-) )
Maria Recamier is also white and very much in love with René on her right, who tries to ignore her there. (She has also nothing to do with our other neighbour of the same name…)

Mimi Labonq is this blue one on René’s right.

Michelle ‘of the resistance’ Dubois is blue coated as well, she is the one on the very left of the picture.

This white one is Private Helga Geerhart.

They will stay another entire day in their new home and I am already looking forward to their first day out.
Whilst I am writing this I can hear René calling…

... That's why! The first egg was layed as a welcome gift! So soon !

Happiness is …
having « des Gauloises « !

8 commentaires:

  1. What handsome birds - hope you enjoy looking after them and eating fresh eggs daily.

  2. Happiness is certainly hen shaped!!!

  3. Thank you for this gracious introduction to les Gauloises. How perfectly you have named them, and described their attributes.

    Surely already having that first egg is a sign that the hens are happy in their new home.

  4. What beautifully named hens you have!

  5. listen very carefully, I shall say this only once:

    My gawd you are soo lucky :)
    Lovely chicken and great coop

    and what are you doing with all the Hühnerkacke?

  6. You made my day, Ivy! First time I hear a German saying those very words, lol. Hühnerkacke is a good fertilizer for the garden, zusätzlich zum Pferdemist, as you know.

  7. You are so lucky to have such beautiful chickens. When we bought our house the former owner’s son had built a chicken coop out of a small barn in the backyard as a school project and there were 3 chicken and one rooster. We kept that and added some more chickens – we had fresh eggs all the time. That was a long time ago and they are all gone now. I used to keep the droppings and when they were dry I used them as part of fertilizer for my roses – I had 120 bushes – I had huge roses. When our daughters left the house and we started to go on trips we could no longer keep them – gave them all away. I miss our pretty chickens. Yours are beautiful. I did not know that breed.

  8. I am interested to get in touch with U . I have started this year with the race Herve as well....can we get in touch?