Tuesday, 25 August 2009

The Ballad of Pombré the Shivering Rat

What a ridiculous day. I thought we were only going to put down a bit more carpet, drop some glyphosate aka the glyco and nip off before it started to rain. Instead I encountered :

  1. Allotment rage
  2. Python power to match Kaa (see Jungle Book)
  3. Ian's poltergeist strewing more cans of 1664
  4. Pombre* the baby rat
  5. Half naked dancing in the rain
  6. A thumb like Mark King from Level 42
  7. Pig and Peanut sangers
  8. Etc.
* The name Pombre comes from Kate's mishearing of hombre. Quite what I was saying
hombre for in the first place is beyond me.

All was going well till I saw an old dude chopping down our blackberry bushes at the back of the allotment. This coming from someone who wants to napalm them arghhahah! He'd lifted one of his fencing panels and come through. I was really pissed off, but Kate reigned me in - I'm still fuming...pointlessly. Plus it turns out another septuagenerian has been on the case. Yes, the blackberry thief! Turns out he's had a letter from the council for prior misdemeanors and he's still keen on pilfering our apples and blackberries. Feel like it's time to break out the Rotties, searchlights and chain links! Why are people so invasive? Or am I being too precious? On with the ballad.

We sat down for lunch, Kate trying the old Pig & Peanut sandwich combo for the first and last time in her adult life. I've got to admit it's time to drop the sacred recipe. We both felt ill, just for different reasons. How brave!

It started raining so I moved our seats under the trees to stay covered. That's when I discovered if I moved my thumb, it wrecked. Kate told me to man up, but she wasn't the one with a digit that could stop an NY taxi in heavy traffic or double up as a meat mallet. So, there I was flexing my purple thumb, feeling sorry for myself, with allotment rage boiling in my cranium, whilst Kate suffered the effect of a concussion (I'll let her tell the tale). I was patently being a wimp. HOWEVER! We carried on! Started pulling back all the old multi-layered carpet that was near the compost bins, picking up a seemingly limitless trail of bottles and cans. It took us ages. We were alternately bagging up the trash or moving the decrepified carpet to the dumping ground at the foot of the plot. Enough was enough, and once it started raining again I went ape, took my top off and started dancing to this little classic : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OsQo_cXouuc. Kate did a brave rendition, but she was laughing too much as you can see.

Kate shouted for me to come over after discovering Pombre. It sounded
pretty urgent so I made my way with all haste. Hark! Mini Pombre the bald rat! He was a tiny little thing, shivering and defenceless and to all appearances blind. Like an idiot I took a photo and the flash went off which probably scared / blinded him even more. We went to some pretty crazy lengths to cover him up again - with corrugated metal and carpet. I did a Dolittle again, as Gigasmethwick was on the prowl licking his lips. Kate was shouting at me because it was time to leave 'It's just a rat, Ed,' I just couldn't leave him alone.

I can say a few things in confidence : I have a bright future in slap bass if my thumb stays at it is, Pig & Peanut is a better name for a Gastro pub than it is a sandwich combo, and we still have tonnes to do - but we're doing it. Every day we're there the earth opens a new pandora's box, a new set of challenges in and around itself - be it errant white haired twerps, verbal battles, potholes, rain, toxic rats, stressed out cats, ubiquitous bloody weeds. Is that all you've got? Hope Pombre makes it through the night...

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