I know I haven’t been around, and I’ll explain why in a minute, but first I need to talk about the foxes!
Those who follow this blog, might remember that I have some foxes that like to sleep in my back garden, and they brought a shoe in. I left the shoe for them because I figured it might be a toy for them. Turns out it wasn’t.
A week ago I was watching the two of them sleep, curled up under the tree. Then one woke up, stretched, walked to the shoe and squatted over it for a moment and left. Ten minutes later the other did the same. With great trepidation I went out to the garden and looked in the shoe. It was filled with fox pee and one fox turd. It wasn’t a toy, it was a toilet! They brought a toilet to my garden. I disposed of it and they haven’t been back since. I have no idea what this means. Have I evicted them?
And now for a brief announcement, I’m disappearing for a while. It’s for a mix of reasons, the simplest is that I’m trying to write a book. I know I just finished the draft of one book, but now I’m working on another (I know I’m so damn productive! Superslow though 😉 ), so I need to concentrate on that for a bit. The other, less fun reason is that I’m having a resurgence of all the PTSD stuff from years ago (I wrote about this in the past, old blogs under the tags to the right). It’s not terrible (certainly nothing like it was), I’m still working, but I’m exhausted and cranky and I don’t want that bad mood to spill into my blogs and bring you all down. I’m not going forever, probably just a few months, and I’ll pop into visit your blogs occasionally to see what you’re all up to.
Please look after yourselves, keep the adventures going without me.
Oh and I went to see the moon in a church. Bet you never realised it would fit!
This is going to be short because I have some evil, life-force sapping virus. I think I’ve had it for a while, which probably explains why my blogs have been so crap recently (doesn’t explain their quality before that, but oh well).
But anyway, the foxes came back, and had a sleep near their shoe, so I glad I kept it. My phone wouldn’t get a good enough picture, so this is from Hamoudi’s. Look at the little chaps!
I get a lot of wildlife in my garden. South East London is greener than North London which entices nature to set up home, and then my garden is mostly left to its own devices so animals get to settle in. Parakeets swoop round in a gang every morning, drunken blackbirds sit on the lawn with their beaks in an apple, and I’ve had a family of foxes visiting for the last few years. What I like about our foxes is that so far they only visit, they don’t crap everywhere or dig holes. Aside from a few squashed plants (which might be the fault of cats) they only come to play or lounge around. Sometimes they bring toys.
This is the shoe they left in my garden last night. I don’t want to remove it in case they want to play with it later.
And a picture from last spring, this is the baby fox who came all the way up the fire escape to sleep on the roof under the kitchen window.
Walking home I reached the pedestrian crossing, where the little man was red and the cars were trundling ahead. But as I stopped at the side of the road all the cars on my side of the road also stopped. The little man didn’t change to green, but I assumed it would in a moment and started crossing. I got to the halfway point when a car came whizzing along on the other side of the road. I thought ‘What a wanker! The lights are red, it could’ve hit me!’
Then I realised the little man still hadn’t changed to green. So the cars must have stopped on one side of the road even though the lights hadn’t changed. It was a whole line of cars, but nobody honked, they simply sat waiting as I crossed the road. Odd eh?
Bizarre word of the day: Camelopard – giraffe
Yes a giraffe used to be called a camelopard (or cameleopard) because most people hadn’t seen an actual giraffe, and assumed it looked like a cross between a camel and a leopard. That idea came from the picture of a giraffe below, drawn in 1655 .
The mice are back, so Mike spent lunchbreak with his feet up on the bench shouting. But look at the little fella, isn’t he just adorbs! The other two were quite cute too, although Mike’s sinister claim that they’ll ‘Get bigger, they start out all small, but they’ll get bigger,’ may lead to issues over space.
Sub Tropical land. I need a short flower interlude from inspirational posters. So I decided to share with you some photos from our sub-tropical border, cos it’s beautiful.
I also thought I should let you know the bloke I see every day, who walks slowly up and down with his head hanging, I haven’t seen him since I wrote about him. I’ve decided for simplicity to call him Brennan, since that name means sorrow and he looks like the most desolate man I’ve seen. I’ll let you know when he comes back. I last saw him on his knees facing a house at seven in the morning so I’m a bit worried.
Word of the day: nullibicity – state of being nowhere
I’m not sure this is a good idea. Where would I put it all?
Was reducing a twenty-five foot bay tree to about twelve foot high today. I didn’t have a ladder, so mostly I was cutting huge chunks out by sawing through thick stems lower down, doing a bit of climbing so I could reach. I could see there were two nests near the top of the tree, it’s past nesting season and there was no tetchy birds around, so I was sure they were empty. After a few hours of cutting and clambering I finally sawed through the branch with one of the nests on and those whole thing came crashing down and landed on the ground. But the nest had vanished.
There was the branch with a bundle of dead leaves next to it. No nest.
But then I thought having a bundle of dead leaves in a tree was weird, not like they’d been pruned and left there, they must have been put there. I was working with Ezekiel (don’t think I’ve mentioned him, he’s very mellow and knows a lot about nature) and asked him what he thought.
‘Well that,’ he said ‘looks like a squirrel’s nest, he’d have built it for the winter to hibernate in. Looks like he never properly used it though, there’s no poo.’
Ezekiel even found a nut in it. So there you are, a squirrel’s nest is made up of dead leaves rolled up.
The other nest was just a bird’s nest and was only used by woodlice.
“Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise”
Word of the day: myrmecophilous– having a symbiotic relationship with ants
This morning my train got cancelled! Which means I ended up sitting in a carriage with all the wrong people, going from the wrong station. I’ll have to wait until Monday to see Angry Staring Man and the twins again.
However I did make two interesting discoveries today. One was that the seed head of Melianthus (pic above) makes a very satisfying popping sound when you squeeze it, far more delightful than bubble wrap. I showed some to Dan and his eyes grew wide as he began popping feverishly away, then I showed Jessica and she was soon jumping up and down on them. I reckon I could market them:
Melianthus bubblepop! The all natural way to relax.
Bubblepop, no plastic, no toxins, just soothing pops to ease your mood.
The other discovery happened when I pulled back a dead leaf and discovered an ants’ nest underneath. They hadn’t even bothered burying their army in the ground. The swarms of flying and pedestrian ants quickly fled to hid under another leaf, but I got a photo.
Oh AND the brilliant Calmgrove has been doubting the veracity of some of my words of the day and has challenged me to use them in a story. I’m not sure how that would prove anything, but I think it’s an excellent idea all the same. It won’t be easy, but I’ll see what I can do.
“First of all nothing will happen and a little later, nothing will happen again.”
Word of the day: oose– furry dust that gathers under beds (from Scots)
There’s a bumble bee nest under our tractor, if you watch the ground for a while, bees will bumble in and out of a crack in the ground. I was too inept to get a good photo, so I took one of them on an Eryngium as well.
And then it poured with rain, I got a headache and fell over in a puddle, so the bumble bees were definitely the highlight.
Sorry for the short blog today, here’s another Eryngium to make up for it.