A Clucking Great Christmas Story

Every Christmas needs a touch of magic

Whether that is a great Christmas party, a kind deed done, an unexpected pleasant surprise, or something completely left-field in an almost unbelievable way, Christmas usually delivers. This year I was gifted with the latter from my friend Sophie Carter. I met Sophie over 5 years ago and we have been friends since. Our connection was during our corporate finance days where we swapped deals and found funders for them.

Over the last 2 years, she lost her mum to cancer, had a cancer scare herself and had her business partner rip her and the investors in her company off as she lay in a hospital bed worried for her life

It was a dark time and she showed incredible resilience to bounce back from this. This year she has become an unlikely vegetarian (I would never have dreamed that she would be a convert) and has taken time to rest and restore herself, which included a trip to a farm in Wales a few weeks ago, where she was able to help out with the animals, unwind and relax in nature.

Enter into the frame an unlikely turkey posse

I am not sure at what point she fell for the plight of Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, Thyme and Paxo, her newly named turkey posse, but she did. Fast forward two weeks via a few conversations with some well-meaning friends, and she had located a turkey sanctuary. This started a 3-day, 900-mile round trip to pick up 5 turkeys and transport them to the sanctuary. On her way back she stayed with me and shared her unlikely tale. Apparently, the sanctuary didn’t approve of the names Sophie gave them so their new names are Tarquin, Olive, TonTon, Hayley and Natalie, where they will be hugged by children and cared for. Bernard Matthews will not get his hands on these plucky birds.

The truth is stranger than fiction

Not even she could explain exactly why she did it, but I did laugh with the revelations that turkey’s don’t like roundabouts and get nervous coming off motorways. Also, they like Michael Buble and Classic FM. I am vegetarian too and not one to evangelise the plight of animals: each to their own as far as I’m concerned. However, the plight of these turkey’s has made me laugh, cry and restored my faith in the magic of Christmas. In the bigger picture of things this is just a drop in the ocean, but in my world, this is a big win for Christmas, and a feel-good tale that makes me smile every time I think about it.


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