Willa Wonka – he sees the world feelingly.
With the odds stacked against him Willy Wonka still strives to live the sweetest life possible.
Presenting with a neurological condition and more, far worse than we had anticipated, was a dear, sweet little lamb, with the most innocent of faces. When it came to adversity, it seems Willy Wonka had drawn the shortest of straws. Vision impaired, angular deformity and slight brain damage are just some of his woes. In fact, the first 24 hours of our shared lives together saw our hopes rise and sink more times than a bottle cork adrift in an ocean storm – our hearts caught in its turbulence. But time marches on, and we determined that we would assist Willy Wonka to march as well. At first he would flop helplessly and hopelessly to his side, lying stiff limbed, eyes wide and staring out to a space he would never see and a place he would never go, a feeble bleat our only hope he was still with us. But with us he was, he really was. A gentle hand to his rear end reassured him the world was still here as we urged him to be a part of it. Initially we needed to physically lift his rear end to encourage him to stand, but this soon gave way to the gentle support offered by a loving hand or supporting leg, and now a kindly word is his guiding ally.
Science tells us that the brains of people born blind rewire to make new connections in the absence of visual cues; this results in enhanced abilities to see the world “feelingly”. Compensating for the lack of vision sees hearing, smell and touch rising to the occasion with a greater capacity to feel the world before them. Willy Wonka, as he stops short before a wall and turns, gravitates his ears towards sound or navigates his way towards our voice, pausing now and then to check he has the orientation right, shows that we humans are not alone in this capability.
As he is now mastering his own destiny and the short walk to his yard. We honestly do not know what the future will be for this little man, or even how long it will be. But what we do know is this: life is not always what it should be, but that should never discourage us from being a part of it. Happiness and joy are there for the taking – we see Willy Wonka choosing these things each time he wags his sweet tail with all the gusto and feeling a little lamb can.
Little did we know, on the first night we met Soldier, that the inky darkness of the sky above was to be foreboding of her fate. She, patiently waiting roadside with the humans who had come to her rescue after the vehicle collision that had rendered her immobile.
With his glistening red comb flopped outrageously over his eyes and his body ensconced by the most silky soft of feather boas, made of the real deal, Earl’s haute couture may not look out of step on the catwalk of Fashion Week or even the cover of Vogue.
Whilst it is hard to define, it is easy to feel, just what makes Special special. For it takes but a moment with this happy-go-lucky little chap to intuit this.
With no need for a Coco Chanel creation or Gucci accessory, our Paris and Nicky Hilton are glamourous girls.
Having difficultly seeing his new world around him, at first Peaky Blinders would scoot away at the mere hint of our presence. But now not so.
Within metres of the road the tiny bird fluttered and flipped. At first thought to be a grey pigeon clipped by a fast-moving car.
As farmed animals, in the scheme of things, it never ends well for them. And every action thus far afforded this mother and child had fuelled their point of view.
There is little doubt Brunswick is a beautiful bird. His magnificent plumage captures the eye, whilst the brilliant radiance of his comb and wattles sets the heart a-flutter.
Around 4.40 pm on the 11th of January 2023, hope met the reality of our promise, as the last Silkie rooster was removed from the tiny wire prison that had been his home for heaven knows how long.