Thursday, November 17, 2011

wild crisp bench

Posted by Picasa There is not much wild about our neighbourhood. Technically I suppose the  squirrels in The Grove are wild.  They subsist on  acorns and beechnuts provided by the trees, and depend  on the human population only in as much as it encourages the trees and preserves a relatively unfettered environment. On the whole people do not feed the squirrels and do not discourage their dogs from chasing  them. From time to time Tunbridge Wells Borough Council initiates a cull by leaving poison in boxes at the top of trees, which reduces their numbers. As a rule the squirrels do not allow you to come too close before they run off. This one is an exception, but there is still a hint of wildness in its eye, the shadow of suspicion and if you look closely the image of the photographer.

When I was a child there was a  breakfast cereal called Rice Krispies, a sort of popcorn using rice instead of corn. ( Through Google  I learn that Kellogg's still produces it). The slogan which encouraged its use played on the noise it made "crackle, crackle pop" when milk was added .This must have appealed to me as a four year old because I have not forgotten the noise or the sense of anticipation promised and satisfied. Today I remember it when I hear the last of the Autumn leaves going" crackle, crackle pop" in the breeze.

There is a bench in The Grove which carries a brass plaque indicating that it was donated by the Friends of the Grove to commemorate The Great Storm of 1987 when so many of the existing trees were felled by the wind. I remember going to bed shortly after 1 am, when the hurricane had not yet struck, and waking up five hours later to scenes of devastation. Because one's life is divided onto distinct periods of varying lengths, and  because the present period includes The Great Storm,  it still seems to me to be a relatively recent event. Yet 24 years is no minuscule parcel of time.


Roderick Robinson said...

Hard to imagine setting out to poison squirrels. They belong to a category of wild life (dolphins are another) which many humans would opt for if the category homo sapiens were no longer available. I think there's a degree of envy.

CC said...

No wonder your Squirrels are wary of humans. Not very condusive to trust, finding poisoned food left in one's tree (home). I enjoy exchanges with Squirrels
in two nearby city parks and try to have
some peanuts on hand for such occasions.
A pleasure watching the recipient deftly open the shell and enjoying the treat.
Now , as for some humans in the parks........ another story. ;~)

Unknown said...

Apparently the population becomes unsustainable. The creatures then invade neighburing houses. For a long time some people have resented the success of the grey squirrel at the expense of the red squirrel. I miss red squirrels but can't object to the grey ones.