Solemn business

As I write the sky is a soft blue streaked with pink. The windows of the house are flung open. It has been a beautiful summer’s day and the long hours of daylight up here turn the evening into an elegant unravelling of light.

Nevertheless it has been a day of great solemnity for Little Owl and I. We have known for a little while that the old horse chestnut tree, where the rope swing dangled enticingly, had been chopped down. Today was the day for marking the sad truth that we will never swing there again. Don’t laugh – this is very serious! We stared for a while at the harsh whiteness of the fresh stump. Then we tiptoed forward reverently, to sit on it and whisper our goodbyes.

Then, as if that wasn’t bad enough, we found the flattest hedgehog I have ever seen in my life on the back lane. There was no getting away from the fact that it was a hedgehog. All its features were there in perfect horizontal. Little Owl was completely flummoxed. How on earth had it got so flat? She peered at it as if the rest of it must be hiding somewhere. With true small child pragmatism she suggested we buy another one. I thought I’d save the harsh truth for another day. In the mean time, however, we can make a new rope swing. The hunt is on for the perfect tree to take over the mantel from the legendary horse chestnut.

This entry was posted in Countryside, Family and friends, Wildlife and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.