Sunday morning, 8.30am. Boyfriend comes into the bedroom to wake me up. I'm not impressed, it's really quite early and I'd be more than happy to stay in bed for another couple of hours. But he tells me he needs my help, we have a duck incident going on outside. A duck incident. Those last words make me jump out of bed, slip on a dress and run outside. I know what he means. The same thing happened last year. But last year, things ended rather badly.
The scene of the crime.
Well no crime as such, but you know what I mean. Not one, not two, not three, but nine tiny little ducklings had fallen through this drain cover. Last year, it had just been one, but I can't tell you how disturbing it is to see a mummy duck going round and round in circles quacking, with her poor little babies squeaking back. One or nine, it's just heartbreaking. You feel so utterly useless and blame the fact that you're big boned and can't slip your hand down the drain cover.
Anyway. So last year, we tried to save that little duckling. We called the RSPCA and they send the local officer around. But by the time they arrived, the duckling had disappeared and gone down a pipe presumably. We still can't sleep over that. This year, we were determined to be more proactive. There were 9 of them in there after all!!! I called the RSPCA, explained the situation and waited for the local officer to call back. Only we couldn't wait. They were all quaking so loud, it just tore my heart. All we needed was something to lift that drain cover. And who would have something like a crowbar at that time on a Sunday morning? The local fire station perhaps... So yes, I called them up. The first words I uttered were "this is not an emergency!!!" - I explained the situation, feeling a little silly, these people save (human) lives after all and surely had bigger fish to fry. Well, not at 9am on a Sunday morning apparently. A massive fire engine turned up 5min later. All five firemen got out, got their tools out and proceeded to removing the drain cover in about, hmmm, it must have been a whole 5 seconds! We then proceeded to scooping out these teeny tiny little balls of fur - they couldn't have been more than a couple of days old - and helping them find their mummy who was standing a couple of meters behind, looking on.
Want to see the happy family reunited?
There you go. My good deed for the day. And the amazing feeling of having made one mummy duck immensely happy for about 2min (how much of a brain/ memory do ducks have after all?!) And I won't go on about how another duck then tried rather hard to drown one of the little ducklings once it was back in the water. But what can you do, you have to let nature take its course. But let them die down a drain, no way Jose!! This gave me butterflies in my stomach for a few hours I can tell you that :-)