Saturday, 17 October 2015

There's a rat on my fork!










I was down at the allotment, picture the scene, clearing the sweet peas away, weeding, always weeding, and then doing a spot of autumnal digging. I plunged the fork into the ground, pulled it out, but there was something stuck on it. I shook it a bit. Shook it a bit more. Peered closely... and, RAT! Speared on the fork! All the way up the tines! What are the odds??? It was pre-dead, thankfully. But there it was, stuck on the fork. I had to slide it off with a stick and scoop it up with my second-best trowel and pop it into the undergrowth on the other side of the fence. I was talking to myself the whole time. Things like, "Seriously??" and "You have to got to be joking."  I'm rapidly becoming the allotment nutter.

I'm almost over the shock now. It took quite a lot of courage to keep digging though I can tell you. And I can hardly think of anything else that's happened. It's certainly cleared my head out.

The last two photos are from a different allotment site. We went to a park in Bristol today and I had a peek into a nearby site. I like to have a nose at other people's plots. Bit of inspiration, bit of motivation. Allotmenteers are great at making stuff from odd bits of wood and leftover junk. It's a real art.

The usual day of football will follow tomorrow. Hurray for dry weather forecasts. CJ xx

42 comments:

  1. Eeeekk... I once did it with a large slug. Not pre-dead. But I still think your rat is worse.

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  2. Those other allotments may perhaps be lovely, but who can claim to have speared and unearthed a rat? What an honor! I think that you deserve a plaque,a silver trophy, a badge, or at least a round of jolly hand clapping.
    This reminds me of the time that my Daddy told me that the only time he ever heard his daddy swear was one night when a rat ran up his night shirt. They lived on a sugar plantation in Hawaii. I never knew my granddaddy, but I know in my heart that he must have been a wonderful man..after all, he produced my beloved father.
    Have a lovely week..Ellen. (p.s.I have managed in the last number of years to make up for his lack of swearing.)

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    1. I somehow now have a mental image of a lovely lady names Ellen swearing like a sailor....in a night shirt.

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  3. Oh yuck! That certainly was an unpleasant surprise for you. :-(

    Steve had to dispatch with a particularly annoying frog the other night. At 2 AM it decided to do it's very loud croaking in our bedroom window ............I didn't ask HOW he got rid of it. Didn't want to know.

    The pansy picture is adorable. They always remind me of little old men with mustaches.

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  4. You are a fearless gardener, CJ :) I wish you could have been with me today. I visited a woman who has grown such an interesting garden. She said that when they moved to their home she and her husband visited a nursery during each season of the year and bought plants that thrived in that season...something I never thought to do. She also used found items to make mosaic plant holders and stepping stones. benches, bird houses, and a potting bench. She's arranged simple little areas to sit and ponder and listen to running water from modest, almost hidden fountains. And she also has a raised garden area...all of this on a relatively small plot of land. "It's a real art." Happy Football! xx

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  5. I'm really glad the rat was pre-dead. Once I was showing someone my pottery studio on our garage and I heard a hideous squeaky squeal and looked down and I was standing on a mouse! He did not make it. Eeks! We are soon to see our little garden go to bed for the winter.. a frost is soon to come. ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

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  6. Poor you (and poor rat!), what an unpleasant experience. Before we got our weight-triggered chicken feeder, we did have the odd rodent visitor in the garden - I had one run over my foot once(!) and E and I spent a merry afternoon in the hammock watching one running between the chicken house and the compost heap, it was rather sweet actually. Your allotment is still looking lovely and productive and I love the keep calm sign. Have fun at the football today. xx

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  7. That would have completely freaked me out!

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  8. Ahh! I'm off to the allotment this morning, hope there aren't any nasty surprises waiting for me! Can I ask some cheeky advice, my allotment mentor, when should I cut and cover my dahlias, I can't seem to let them go... But don't want to lose them!! 🌺🌸🌺

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  9. Urgh! I had one peering out at me from the compost bin once. It skedaddled. So did I. A dead fox in the garden was the worst thing to dispose of. I'm glad you used your second-best trowel.

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  10. If you could see my face right now! Yuck! That was a bit of a shock to the system. I remember last year we had to put a spot of poison down by my greenhouse as they were coming in to nick the bird food. I peered into the back of the greenhouse a couple of days later and could see a rat peering out of the tunnel it had built to get in. Thinking not to corner it I called my hubby in and he said it had actually died sitting up. Shivers!!

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  11. Crikey CJ - there's something to look forward to! Thank goodness it was a dead one! Hope it hasn't put you off your allotment nuttery too much x

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  12. I am always a little envious of allotment owners, in my ideal world that would be perfect for me. One thing is for sure I am not envious of a dead rat on my fork that would be the end of me, you are certainly one cool customer. I certainly applaud your bravery. Take care.

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  13. Oh my goodness, I think I'd have downed tools and run. I love looking around allotment sites, it usually motivates me in to putting a bit more work in on my own plot when I've seen what people achieve with theirs, they always look more well kept and more productive than mine.

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  14. It's good to still see plenty of colour on the allotments. Be thankful that it was an already dead rat! I think that we all like looking round other sites, and I agree about plot art being real.
    I hope that you're having a good Sunday. Flighty xx

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  15. What a surprise! Like an episode of Fawlty Towers.

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  16. Nooo! I thought slugs were bad enough!

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  17. I found a headless rat on the allotment once. I ignored it and next day it was gone. Thank you buzzards. Much worse though was a dead slow worm caught in the netting covering the fruit bushes and discovered during a very hot summer. I had to deal with it because of the smell (rotting fish) which stayed in my nostrils for days. We saw a dead mole today, really his little paws could have been crafted from pink felt - so sweet but sad too. You have to be made of strong stuff to be an allotmenteer.

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  18. Wow, that would be totally awful. We don't have rats just running around like that. You decided not to share a picture with us? ;)

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  19. Oh my goodness! I think I would have screamed! We used to have numerous rats in our garden all thanks to our neighbour, a professor, who was very lazy when it came to putting rubbish in his bin and hence much of it landed on the ground, thus attracting vermin. After we called out pest control he got the message and tidied up his act! On the bright side, at least you got it on your fork and not in your hands!
    Caz xx

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  20. Oh good grief. I would've dropped the fork and backed away I think. Nightmare! I've never seen a real rat (dead or alive). Are they as big as people say? xx

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  21. oh my gosh, you would have heard me screaming from there if i'd pierced a rat! but then I would have been very pleased with myself - I hate rats! (I've had them in my home's roof space). the only good rat is a dead one, so well done to you CJ! but still, holey moley.
    I love the romance of your allotment photos. they really do transport me to a fantasy ideal of gardening, where everything is pretty and easy and wonderful :-)

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  22. Yikes, a dead rat. I am just glad you didn't have any of my children with you, they might have insisted in dissecting the animal and find out what killed it. They did that once with a mouse the cats brought home (with their mad dad). We saw a rat in the monkey walk through at the zoo. It seemed quite at home. Have a lovely rat free week! x

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  23. Oh no I think my comment got lost. I will try again. I think you are very brave to have handled the rat episode, I would have screamed and ran away like a nutter. I am muttering to myself more and more these days, I wonder if I am going a bit crazy?
    Hugs,
    Meredith

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  24. Urgh! That must have been a nasty shock. Top marks for handling it so well. Hope the football went well. Sam x

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  25. Oh yuk - not your expected crop! I'm guessing a glass of wine and some cake were needed to get over the shock.

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  26. I bet you felt that time had stopped when you saw your speared rat!! Just as well you weren't digging for potatoes my dear xx

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  27. I can just picture it! At least the rat was already dead.

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  28. I am so glad that you didn't publish a photograph of it yuck.

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  29. How horrible you were brave it would put be off digging without some morale support! Sarah x

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  30. Ugh! So glad you didn't take a picture! Reminds me of the lovely evening this summer when I was picking lavender in the front garden and discovered a dead pigeon under the bush - shudder! I love your autumnal allotment photos.
    Cathy x

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  31. You're a very brave woman. I might have screamed, but what can you do when you're there alone, really? Just pluck off any dead animals stuck to your implements and keep on keeping on. :)

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  32. Oh no!! I would have flipped out!! You're a very brave woman indeed! I honestly think I would have run away screaming:) Good for you for taking care of business. Hopefully there won't be any more surprises. Hope you're having a great start to your week. The baby just started crying, but I wanted to stop in and say hi:)

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  33. Eek, what a shock, I've speared a few slugs in my time but never a rat! I like looking at other's allotments too; allotment art - there should be an exhibition somewhere don't you think? Haveca great week xx

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  34. Eek, what a shock, I've speared a few slugs in my time but never a rat! I like looking at other's allotments too; allotment art - there should be an exhibition somewhere don't you think? Haveca great week xx

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  35. Oh I do love allotments, I'd have one myself but can only just about manage the raised beds on my garden! Rats are everywhere, I had one (I know there's never one!) living n my compost bin for ages...every time I threw something in out his head would pop!!! Minnie keeps them away now, thank goodness ;) xxx

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  36. Eek! Although it probably won't surprise you to know that I am not all that anti-rat. I think they get a tough press on the whole. They don't carry the vast array of diseases they're often accused of and while you wouldn't want them in your house if you remove the food source from the garden they quickly disappear. We've got a sonic thingy in the attic which repels mice and rats and seems to work. Love all the allotment shots XX

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  37. EEWWW! I would have thrown the fork away. I can handle a mouse, but a rat. Yuck. :-(

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  38. I'm dying. I love the idea of an "Allotment Nutter". In my case my town is exceeding it's Nutter Allotment, haha!

    I am grateful that the Rat was pre-dead as well, but um yeah, eww gross!

    Love the weeding mat. heh.

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  39. Crikey ... and you seemed so normal when I met you ;o)

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  40. Hey CJ,
    Have you ever watched Withnail and I? There's a good scene that references forking a rat.
    Leanne xx

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