Lord help the Mister

I’ve been wrestling with my wretched widgets, and they’ve left me drained. I was still doing battle alternately with wordpress and the flailing, roaring (I’m on my OWN in here Mummy want BOOB want CUDDLES) baby at 1am this morning when hairy hubby lurched cheerfully through the front door, having, as the Irish say, drink taken. The birthday party from which he staggered was one I quite fancied attending myself, but acceptable babysitters were simply not to be had.  So, he wore the dress and I stayed home.

John can no longer tolerate alcohol in the truly riotous quantities he used to consume as a 20-something youth. In fact, he tends to fall asleep after about his 5th pint these days. Last night was bang on form: he settled himself unsteadily on the beanbag and proceeded to drift off in front of the snooker. Easy done. Once upon a time, I would have prodded him mercilessly awake and driven him towards a bed; however, his snores were clearly audible in our bedroom as it was, so I left him to emerge from his stupor in his own time, which turned out to be 5am.

This morning he was clearly suffering, although wise enough not to admit to it. He subsided quietly in front of the TV with Harry, and they were getting on famously together when an interruption in the form of a revolted squeak from myself shattered the calm. Matilda had caught a frog.

Matilda & Co

I have not previously introduced Matilda: a jaunty hen, and the most personable, explorative and nosy of our poultry. She is the only hen to have completed a full circuit of our ground floor; I shooed her out of the front door on that occasion, breathing a sigh of relief that John Had Not Seen, as several hens had already incurred his wrath by trespassing a mere few inches into the doorway. He was Not Amused to later discover, (I fear, with a toe) the hen crap on the kitchen floor.

I was embarrassed, but entirely unsurprised, when the Delightful Doctors told us that the caravan being utilised as a temporary kitchen whilst their extension took place, was Matilda’s preferred lunchtime restaurant. She had apparently learnt to beg, with liquid eyes that would not disgrace my spaniel. In short, a determined, spirited & ingenious hen, unlikely to give up a prize titbit.  So, when I saw her hurtle down the henrun, I had a feeling that it must be in defence of something she did not wish to share… les cuisses de grenouille are not common hen fayre, yet Matilda has shown a decided predilection for these poor creatures once or twice; beak bulging like a panicking boa constrictor who has, this time, bitten off more than it can chew. And so it proved again: unable to consume her godzilla-sized catch, (by now, I hoped & believed, dead) she proceeded to sprint up & down with it, chased by a comet-tail of eager followers.

Hairy Hubby suddenly became a man re-vitalised. Grabbing the camera, he galloped erratically out of the door in unstrapped sandals, and joined in the hot pursuit of Matilda. Trailing last but steadfast, he belted after her in quest of the perfect Hen Eats Frog photo. David Attenborough does have hero status in our house, but nevertheless, I found this a little too much soon after breakfast. I turned my attention to Harry, only to find him happily watching boxing on TV (!) and for once, in no need of Mummy ministrations. Hence, once John had stopped running, I felt conjugally obliged to look at his hen photos. He blamed the new lens for the failure to attain the perfect shot, but nevertheless, he had unmistakably captured the moment.

Wanna see? You do? Or don’t really want to look but can’t help yourself?

Here you go then.

Just another Sunday in the Hairy Farmer household.

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