30 October, 2012

Web-Slinging and Grand-Theft Pastry

With work being as it was for both of us this year we hadn’t had a holiday by the end of August. And then our daughter started school in September, constraining us around term-dates for the next decade at least. So. Here we are. Paying a massive premium for a holiday that would have been 10 degrees hotter a month ago. Still, it’s nice to have a rest and let the mind wander a bit. I’d like to say I’m mulling-over possible solutions for the Euro zone crisis or the plight of Palestine… but I’m not. I’m fixated with the problems in my own back-yard. And out the front. Namely spiders… and foxes.

Spiders first. There’s increasingly greater numbers of increasingly big eight-legged guys surrounding our house. And they’re aggressively target-ambitious. To date, locations of huge and surprisingly-thick webs (seemingly spun overnight) have included: the space between two hedges above our front gate; filling the entire external frame of the back door; and between the seat and the handlebars of my moped. We had joked about a load of them catching one of us and dragging the unlucky victim to an underground cavern as offering to a giant spider over-lord, like in that Harry Potter film*. But when they started targeting the entrance gap in the netting around the kids’ trampoline, I really started to get concerned - have they actually learned to go for smaller human targets?
We’re currently on holiday and I’m worried that, without my daily demolition of their night-shift progress, they’ll get a real strong footing and we’ll come home to a suburban approximation of the film Aliens.

As for foxes, while there’s no obvious sign of a child-abduction plot from them, they have actually started on a pretty solid campaign of larceny. I talked in a previous post (Learned Wisdon #16) about them ripping into our bins, but now they’re stealing our food deliveries.
On a Saturday morning we get milk, bacon, eggs, sliced bread and croissants left on the doorstep by the milkman. To the great disappointment of my daughter, for the last three weeks the only thing left when I open the door is milk and sliced bread.
The bacon and eggs I can understand, but the croissants?? Their instincts and digestive-systems surely aren’t designed for continental breakfasts. [looks out window, sees fox in beret and stripy jumper cycling past with onions round neck]

Anyway, it’ll be a short-lived problem. It’s only a matter of time before I wake up to find all the region’s foxes cocooned in webbing on our lawn. Hopefully. (Must remember to research any recorded cases of spiders and foxes forming an alliance to achieve unified strategic goals with unexpectedly powerful efficiency… may possibly have to go less specific on the search terms)

By the way, for those of you who know where I live, obviously all that ‘currently on holiday’ stuff was artistic licence. Don’t get any burglarisation ideas. Really I’m sat at home right now with a f*cking big guard dog spider-fox-army.

* the one with the spiders

Learned Wisdoms
#42: Occasionally taking children out of school for the odd few days for holidays during their early years probably isn’t a problem to their development, but be careful with their understanding of the official line or you will get an angry call from the headmaster…
Teacher (at the end of a Thursday): “Toby, don’t take your gym bag home tonight – you’ll need it for P.E. tomorrow”
My friend’s nephew, Toby (clasping his gym bag firmly as he walked out the door): “Actually Miss, I won’t need it tomorrow… because I’m not going to be very well tomorrow”