(At this point I would just like to dig myself out of my analogy. Obviously, I could have written "its over for another year..." but that may imply a certain lack of energy or ambition on my behalf and I would also like to take issue with the "short time" element of that sentence, again, it is not meant as an accurate description of yours truly .... Shall I start again.)
Anyway, there is was - gone!
As I sit here in the post coital lull between Christmas Day and the effort to get excited about changing the date on the calendar that is the New Year, it is time to reflect on the holiday period. How was yours? Mine was just great. Giddiness aside I had a really good Christmas day with my lovely lady and favourite (only :-) ) son. Neil had spent the night with his girlfriend and her little boy and tasted for the first time the joy of spoiling a youngster on this special day. It was a revelation for him and he knows that it will be the norm for him from now on. Nicky and I also realised that it will be our last Christmas with Neil - singular, it will be the family hereafter.
We spoiled him rotten of course. We do like giving gifts and to see Neil's face when we dumped a sack full of goodies before him was a treat. I'd been to a tackle show and got a tremendous deal on a magazine subscription with £400 worth of gear for a mere pittance, it was just what he wanted Santa to drop by for him, that plus books booze and a pile of odds and ends and the set of Delkims that Santa also brought his dad - joy!
I even surprised Nicky and bought her some things that she wanted - result.
Star of the day was a poor waif that needed some Christmas compassion and was welcomed into our humble abode where he was given food and shelter. It was a juvenile hedgehog, the one we had fed all summer in an attempt to get it up to hibernation weight. It seems we fell short as it weighed a mere 12oz about half what is needed to get it through the winter. We've 'rescued' a few hedgehogs in the past but usually, by the time you find them in distress, they seem to thrive for a couple of days then succumb to the dreaded lung worm or some other parasitical invasion. Branston (Branston Prickle), ate its way through countless mealworms which it would happily take from my hand along with meat, fruit, cat food, cereal and cheese but alas, it has not increased in weight. Yesterday we made the 100 mile round trip to a rescue centre where Branston will join the other 160 rescued hogs and hopefully we shall collect it in the spring and release it back into the garden. Fingers crossed.
You may recall from a previous blog entry that my neighbour found a Manx Shearwater in her garden back in back in September. Well yesterday I learned what the animal rescue hospital staff did to repatriate them. It would seem that, after a good rest and a bit of a feed they were taken to the Severn Bridge where they were thrown off the side! It may sound drastic but Shearwaters cannot take off from land, they take flight from water where they can paddle up some speed into the wind or the drop in from a cliff edge so 300' of bridge is just like home to them. Makes my stomach go over just thinking about it. I've been over, inside, under and up the towers of that bridge, I don't relish the thought of the quick way down though. Incidentally, of those that were taken to the Beckford animal hospital all but one survived.
And finally, my giddiness is on the wane and I even drove for a while yesterday so I shall be up to my old tricks again very soon. About bloody time too.
Happy New Year to everybody that stops by.