It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a big, fat squirrel in possession of a large nut, must be in want of a chase from small dog.
Thus this morning, as I made a cup of tea, I happened to glance idly out of the kitchen window, to see a huge squirrel sitting right in the middle of the lawn, tucking into a sizeable nut.
Our garden backs onto ancient woodland, which is alive with all manner of creatures, especially squirrels. At this time of year, when they're frantically storing nuts for the winter, the top of our fence which runs from the back of the garden, all the way to the front of the house, resembles nothing so much as a squirrel M25. Sometimes there can be so many squirrels ferrying nutty booty up and down the fence that they have to wait in line, nuts in paws, till there is a gap in the flow.
Anyhoo, back to the squirrel in question, which I can only describe as morbidly obese. In fact, it had so much fat laid down that it could tuck into its store of nuts with complete equanimity, safe in the knowledge that it could probably last several winters on its own fat reserves alone.
Now small dog likes nothing better than a good squirrel chase. If she's indoors and sees a squirrel running along the top of the fence, or catches a glimpse of one in the garden, she sets off at top speed, letting out squeals and yelps of excitement at the thrill of the chase.
This morning, she happened to stroll nonchalantly into the kitchen just as I caught sight of the squirrel on the lawn.
Me: Oh, you're up are you? Well.... Shhhhh......... SQUIRREL!!!!!
Small Dog: AWWWWWRRRRIGHTTTTT!!!!!!!!
However, instead of setting off with her usual unearthly battle cry, she zoomed outside silently, picking up speed across the patio and up the steps to sail over the wall onto the lawn.........where still sat the squirrel, oblivious to the small furry ball of quantum velocity heading its way.
As she literally flew over the top of the wall, small dog caught sight of the squirrel, and although already travelling at a zillion miles an hour, moved up a few gears until she was a mere blur.
Caught by surprise, the squirrel belatedly took to its chubby little heels and ran up the garden as if it were pursued by the hounds of hell, which, in a way, it was.
It couldn't half shift for a fat squirrel.
Disappearing under the hedge, followed nanoseconds later by small dog, it must have escaped by the skin of its teeth. Small dog re-appeared straight away, squirrel-less, but with the air of a job well done.
So, here is a photo of a more slimline model of squirrel. Yes, hand on heart I can honestly say that the squirrel in question was FATTER than this one, but sadly this is the fattest squirrel I could find, courtesy of Google Images.
Now I'd best get back to work before I fall prey to the displacement goblins