Well, it’s been an eventful few days, I’m posting this from my temporary hedge accommodation provided by insurance, as we’ve had a little disaster. The company have been very nice, keeping me wrapped up with lovely itchy blankets, and provided a special box for the toads. I get fed three times a day (no hessian crackers here, though, and no Lungwort soup) but it’s better than an iron boot up the arse.
It all started two days ago…..
Aunt Bench, in a desperate plea, left a note, pinned to her daughter, on the doorstep of Mrs Coddy, who lives in the village. Bench is suffering episodes of ‘funny ideas’ and ‘wistful notions of sailors’ again. Apparently she needs a break. So at 6am yesterday, she put Folly on Mrs Coddy’s doorstep and with the note saying ‘Wait here until she opens the door, darling, and don’t be impatient and ring the bell’. Mrs Coddy finally surfaced and opened the door at 1pm, and found Folly eating the cow parsley. Of course, she was reluctant to take in a renowned disaster magnet, so she tactfully came to my hedge on the grounds that ‘family is better’. I could quite cheerfully kick Mrs Coddy up the arse…but she’ll keep for now. No-one will look for her under her own patio.
I managed to keep Folly entertained and out of trouble for the first night. While she was distracted in destroying a perfectly good piano with grandfathers’ mace, I had time to hide the matches, flammable liquids, and anything that could be set fire to or detonated. Once my task was completed and I’d taken the bolt cutters off her for the third time, I tried to teach her counting, which failed after she ate the flageolet beans I was using for demonstration purposes. Then I decided a game of Ludo would be nice, but she’s eaten four green counters and two yellows, and Lord knows where the red one went. So I switched tack and we watched ‘Snatch’ on my new wooden DVD player that Aunt Weevil made for me. It’s marvellous, a little grainy in the picture, but great for what I need. And Brad Pitt was in his most handsome, hunky role….I digress.
The following day, Folly became bored and wandered. It transpires that she stumbled upon a ceremony in a field, and became engrossed in the proceedings. The group she found was none other than the Order of the Golden Woodlice, a local Druid grove, whom I’m cursing with the Square of Mars as they’ve bloody taken her to their bosom. Pictured below, is Grand Priestess Uvula and her two sprogs, Tristan and Crispin. There are many others, including local Simeon St. Gribble, a wealthy financier and general shit.
Folly came back after dark, covered in twigs and stinking of Prinknash Abbey incense, claiming to have ‘found her path’ and ‘realised life’s true meaning’. Part of me was encouraged, if this meant she’d stop blowing her feet off while playing with semtex, maybe there was a glimmer of hope? She did appear to be speaking sense for once, harping on about the death of the Oak King and making way for the darkness once more. She even spoke about the value of hemlock in tea for unwanted visitors. Had we finally turned a corner?
It seems I am rather naive. We hadn’t. I went to bed happy……
I slept fantastically, putting Folly’s new found spiritual path out of my mind, and only vaguely remember noises in the kitchen first thing. As soon as my subconscious shouted to me to get up and check on Folly, there was the most almighty ‘BOOM!’, followed by a cold wind and a rushing sensation.
The rushing sensation turned out to be my bed-bound airborne journey from my hedge, across the fields and byways of Clopton Mandrill, and onto the roof of St Crapulent the Martyr’s church in St. Grundy, seven miles away. If I hadn’t looked down on Aunt Vom fighting a bloke outside the Nun’s Chuff in Stroud, I would have thought I was dreaming.
According to the police, the fire department, and the bomb squad, a unique chain of events happened that defies human comprehension. But they gave it a title, and my heart sank when I read the heading of the report. It just said….’Folly Made Breakfast – NATO Class III Alert’.
Forensics said the damage was caused by three things:
1. Trying to cook a gas bottle in a pan on a gas cooker (she’d even seasoned it with Jamie Oliver’s Lemon & Thyme salt mill)
2. Poking dynamite into the toaster.
3. Baking some petrol soaked halibut in the oven at gas mark 8 for 30 minutes. (The fish had a chilli and flat leaf parsley rub, and was garnished with roasted shallots and peppers – all of which she claims were the real culprits).
Apparently, her Druidic experience had an elemental side to it, they said Folly is too ‘Water’, and needs to balance herself with ‘Fire’. I’m mildly curious as to their vetting process. Apparently she’d set fire to two of them with a flaming torch before they’d opened the Quarters, and they still let her in. It just goes to show some groups will take anybody. As for the fire balancing, my neighbour, Mrs Coddy, is still wailing about her eyebrows.
I now have to find Aunt Bench and tell her that Folly is being ‘counselled’ by a nice lady with a big cardie, chunky beads and a tasselled skirt. She’s informed Folly that ‘there are no real Druids’, at which point Folly had to be restrained as she became dreadfully fractious and totally kicked off.
The police have also told me that Folly is a death trap and must not be let out into the community again, at which point I was hopeful, until the social worker whined on about her rights. I was gutted. She’s been released into my custody, even after licking the face of two policemen. This is why I never spawned my own kind. The dear bats are so easy to care for.
Aunt Vom turned up and took her way, thankfully. When Vom got her home, she hung Folly up on a coat peg by the loop in her school blazer, and is leaving her there until the morning. I like to picture her like this, with her little feet dangling below. I’m so grateful to Vom, but furious with Bench. My hedge is ruined, Mrs Coddy is livid as the blast flattened six of her geese. They’re unharmed, but you can only see them when they turn side-on.
Clopton Mandrill has issued a state of emergency, and tens of people are homeless or living in dangerous conditions. The Royal Marines are being called in to clear up the mess. The mess was so scary, the Coldstream Guards ran away and told their Mums.
The Home Secretary and the Ministry of Defense are monitoring Folly, and instructing Aunt Vom on her care. the Russians have already been on the blower to Number 10 and said whatever the bribe is for Folly, they don’t want her. Even Donald Trump, who labelled her misunderstood in his Tweets, now claims ‘America is Full’, and won’t take her. The social worker popped in with advice on sharing and issues. Vom showed her her knife collection, gave her a Glasgow kiss, and the woman retreated with apologies.
So, no Fawlty Towers omnibus for me, no quiet teas by the canal, no crackly leaf carpet, no more hedge until it’s been checked and sealed by men in plastic suits with ‘creaky things’ that read radiation. I’m only able to write this thanks to the emergency dongle, kindly provided by Major Ponsonby-Goppin, of Her Majesty’s Royal Marines. They play nice music as well. As I was being airlifted off the church, they did a drum display to keep us entertained. We all clapped, except the Vicar, who’d lost a hand in the blast.
Sadly, most of my spiders didn’t survive, but the Marines rescued Peadar, my best spider, and have housed him in a little box of his own. They also rescued Leopold and Erica, the tortoises, although, in their escape they’d only moved two feet in six hours.
I will report more when Clopton Mandrill is a little better restored, and I’m safe in the knowledge that Aunt Vom has nutted Aunt Bench for her stupidity. Meanwhile, any ideas on how to re-decorate my hedge? Do I go rustic again, or street chic? Hedge chic is very fashionable, but I do like to buck the trend. Maybe I’ll go post-modernistic punk/flapper. With cushions. Peep peep to you all, and sleep well, and may your week be filled with really nice upholstery.