The fact that we made it there at all is frankly a miracle, because late last night Pop had a too-close encounter with the Moth Box that nearly ended in disaster all round. It was sitting on its table in the garden lighting up everything for several miles around and M had taken the dogs out for a pee before bedtime with Pop on the lead as per vets' instructions. Apparently, he has trouble thinking and seeing at the same time, because despite the blinding beacon shining in the garden, he somehow he didn't notice she was getting very close to it.
Her lead got wrapped around the electric cable that feeds the box, and the entire contraption, box, table and all, was pulled over and came crashing down around her. I heard M yell her name, heard the sound of everything collapsing and for one utterly horrific moment I thought she'd been killed underneath it all.
Fortunately, half a second later she came pelting round the side of the house, dragging her lead with her and looking absolutely terrified. She made a bee line straight for my feet where she sat, shaking and trembling until I persuaded her that she was alright.
The Moth Box survived too (mercifully, because they are around three hundred quid to replace) and even the moths were alright. A little surprised at finding themselves upended on the grass, but essentially unharmed. In a way it was a blessing because there were five hornets in the box and I was able to remove them. Although not without some personal risk as two of them landed on me.
Erm, I called out to M who by this time had gone back inside to reassure a still quivering Poppy, Erm, I don't want to worry you, but I've got TWO HORNETS crawling up my back. Can you rescue me please?
In a minute, came the unconcerned reply.
In a minute?! Flippin' hell, I thought.
So I walk towards the back door (as calmly as it's possible to with two hornets crawling up your back buzzing angrily and getting dangerously close to your hair/ ear/ general face area) and say in a voice of rising hysteria: I've got two hornets on my back. Can you help!
At which point an extremely alarmed husband explodes from the back door yelling: Oh my God! I thought you said there were two hornets on the grass!
Anyway, they were removed and I remain sting-free.
So Pops and Ted and I arrive at the vets this morning where Poppy elicits various oohs and ahhs (because she's in her stripy jim jams and she looks cute), and much excited sniffing of bums goes on (between the dogs, obviously). And all is going fine until an enormous Alsatian comes in and they both suddenly go ballistic.
Teddy's yelling his head off as if he's being murdered and poor Reenie on the phone can't hear a word she's saying, and then Pops starts up with her high-pitched whistling, giving her brother back up. To call that whistle piercing is an understatement. What makes it worse is that none of the other dogs in the waiting room are making a single sound. They are all sitting on the floor by their parent's feet, obedient and quiet, politely watching this fascinating display of lunacy from my two hooligans, who by this time are straining at their leads and rushing backwards and forwards under and around the chairs of the waiting room in such a great state of unbridled excitement that it isn't long before I find myself caught in the centre of an intricate web of dog lead knitting, from which it is virtually impossible to extricate myself without assitance.
The whole thing is made much, much worse by the immaculate woman sitting opposite. I am in my usual state of disrepair: scruffy jeans and ancient body warmer (which has threads pulled out and contains various dubious stains of ancient origin) finished off with four-year old Cath Kidston trainers that to be honest saw better days a year ago, clean but scraped back hair and for once some makeup, although inexpertly applied because it was a last-minute panic application following a glance in the mirror as I was about to leave. She on the other hand, is wearing one of those neat beige belted-up macs over clean dark blue jeans that end in neat boots, her hair is up in one of those fancy twirly french pleat things and her makeup looks like it's been done by a professional at one of the counters in John Lewis.
Her two equally air-brushed children are staring in open and wide-eyed horror at T and P's antics and I'm thinking it's probably a good thing I decided to leave L sleeping in this morning, otherwise he'd have been with me, which would mean his clothes would have consisted of something along the lines of jeans that have holes where both the knees should be and his favourite evolution t-shirt, the one that shows the evolved human flicking a V at the next one in the line and bearing the legend 'Stop Following Me!', as well as various pen-knives which invariably dangle from his belt at any one time, and a small bullet he's taken to wearing recently on a chain round his neck.
She smiles a smile of such pure patronising disdain when I finally manage to free myself from the dog lead knitting and have grabbed Teddy's nose with my hand and effectively muzzled him so no further noise comes out, that I find myself contemplating whether it might be possible to remove her perfectly clean (I'm suspicious it had been shampooed for the occasion) Labrador and roll it in a muddy puddle outside.
I breathed a sigh of relief when the (extremely young, or maybe I am just getting extremely old?) vet called us in. Pops went first and the happy news is the stitches are all out. The less happy news is that she's got to do another two days on lead duty. Still, silver linings and all.
And LOOK: Woo Hoo! No more PJs!.......
That particular celebration proved to be over hasty. They need to be on till the scab she's created dries, because as soon as we got home she started picking at it. Lovely.
Teddy, meanwhile screamed throughout the entire process of his inoculation, and when she offered him the bribery biscuit at the end he didn't even deign to take it from her hand. Instead, he sniffed it once and turned his nose very deliberately away. Oh dear. He's fine now, but he told me on the way home he never ever wants to go to the V.E.T.s again.
I got home and despite all probability it wasn't even half past nine.
I soothed my nerves with the relative peace of going through the rescued moth box, and will leave you with a couple of pics of survivors of the night's adventures......
|Perky-eyed September Thorn|
|'I surrender!' Sexton or Burying Beetle Nicrophorus investigator (the undertakers of the beetle world, they bury the bodies of small birds and mammals and then lay their eggs on them)|
Sorry, that last one was a bit gruesome (if useful) so I'll say goodbye properly with a pic of a droplet-covered spider's web, taken on the lane this morning. It is Quite Possibly the last offering from my faithful old Lumix, which is giving up the ghost. I am off to get a replacement this afternoon because I can not bare to be without a camera. I have been told I will be 'astounded at the advances in technology over the last eight years.' More sales-people talk? We'll see. I am NOT going to get it from any large or well-known chain stores, but instead am giving my business to a smaller and more local one. I'm not making that mistake again........
Hope all are well?