Monday, July 26, 2010

Wildlife No 10

So I'm sitting writing and can hear the familiar scratching above me that can only be coming from a large nest of extremely large 4 legged, grey creatures with flat pinky tails, and I'm thinking, aha, heres the making for a Wildlife post.  Maybe it's because I'm getting used to the Wildlife in Australia that it no longer grosses me as much, or maybe because I thought you'd all started to tire a bit of my wildlife ramblings, especially after the heated backlash (thanks Sister) from this (actually rereading the one innocuous comment, I remember now the backlash was verbal and was indeed from the Sister).  But then I remembered a doozy that I was sooo traumatised by that I promised myself I would write about it one day when it was a distant memory (or living in a new place which is what has happened).

Picture my old house, bordered with trees on the neighbours property right beside our pool fence.  Possums would wander along the pool fence then jump up into the trees for the evening.  As this usually happened just when it got dark, and as our favourite summertime venue for entertaining was beside our pool, this made for some tense evenings with the Husband and I vigilantly watching the fence, kids water gun (or for the Husband, his golf club) ready while attempting to maintain our composure and continue chitchatting with friends.  One evening, my brother-in-law suffered a serious trauma, when a possum scampered along the fence, hovered for a moment right beside him, whereupon The Husband charged it with his golfclub and I blasted it with the watergun.  My brother-in-law could be forgiven for the Man Scream that followed as the golf club whished past his head and he simultaneously copped an earload of water , which he logically thought was possum blood.  We'll dine out on that story for years.

However....when the neighbours started to build their new house, they cut down all the trees.  leaving the possums no where to dine.  Just after this has happened I was out by the fence, putting my rubbish bins out for the week.  House doors open, windows open, boys inside, me in bare feet.  Just setting the scene...

Suddenly I realised I wasn't alone but a possum was sitting on our fence, only inches from me, and trapping me from getting back in the house.  I screamed.  The possum took off.  Towards our front door. Which was open.
Noooooooooo (said in slow motion!)

"Will, close the front door"  I scream through the windows and behind the pool fence at him.  "Eh?" he says.  "CLOSE THE FRONT DOOR", I scream back.  "I'll do it at the next ad break", he calls back.   "DO IT NOW!!!!!!!", I scream and I think finally hearing the hysteria in my voice, and realising he may be the cause of that hysteria, as well as wondering why his mother is screaming at him through the pool fence, out in the dark, when he thought she was getting his dinner right beside him, he springs to action.  Disaster averted.  We had a bird in the house one and it caused carnage, I can only shudder what a possum would have done.

And every Thursday night until we left that house, one of my boys would be on "torch duty" while I took out the rubbish bins for fear of another possum encounter.
I have pest people coming out next week, so I'm not that used to this country that I think it's fine to live with rats in my roof. Just saying.

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