Posted by: Paul | April 7, 2010

Squirrels are Naughty Boys

You love the holidays when you’re a kid of course, but it’s only when you become a parent do you truly realise what a pain they can be. There’s a certain, shrinking group – those that drive to work – who appreciate the school run being off the road for a couple of weeks at a time, but for the rest of us it can be a nightmare.

Point One. During the school holidays, public transport turns into an instant disaster area. As if the threat of post-Easter strikes this year wasn’t bad enough, during the holidays the trains in particular fill up with day trippers to London. They tend not to trouble the morning commute (too early), but the evening peak (which off peak fares are supposedly prohibited from using) is jam packed with buggies and over-excited, over-tired and irritable children who’ve just seen a red bus for the first time.

Point Two. From the parent’s point of view – i.e. mine – all those regular routine activities you go to with your child every week on the same day at the same time suddenly get cancelled. I mean, for what?! Surely it’s MORE important to have things to do during these weeks, rather than having to change all your well laid plans? This drives me mad.

Anyway, it’s largely due to Point Two that Adam and I end up in a local nature reserve this morning, wandering aimlessly about. I say aimlessly – we were looking for Squirrels. We come across two in the middle distance, chasing each other in and out of piles of dead leaves and around the trunks of fallen trees. With the trees all still bereft of leaves, just straight slender naked sticks marching off into the distance, it looked rather like a David Hockney painting. I put Adam down (not much walking today, mostly carrying), pointed out the grey squirrels darting around, and explained how naughty they can sometimes be, stealing nuts and bread off garden bird tables.

“Naughty Boys!” yells Adam at the top of his voice. Exit Squirrels.

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