An infrequent evening alone, sans children
|Pic - Aerokev|
Mrs Botogol and I were on the point of leaving, just minutes from our rendez-vous with gastronomy, when the phone rang
"It's Gull Rescue, Mr Botogol, we can come out to you after all. We're on our way - with you in five"
"It was Gull Rescue, dear", I explained, "they can come out after all. They are on their way now"
"But Alibert, our table is booked for... three minutes' time"
"I know. Hmm.. there's only one solution", I said, "One of us must walk down to the George, claim our table, and then settle down to wait in the wing-backed leather chair in the lounge by the roaring fire, with an apple bellini .... while the other stays at home and helps chase an injured gull round the garden in the mud and rain"
I looked at Mrs Botogol, and Mrs Botogol looked at me.. a marital dilemma..
"I think", said she, pausing elaborately, "you'll want to take one for the blog"
"Well there you go", said the man from Hastings Gull Rescue, as we approached the angry, cornered bird, down by the compost heap, under the trampoline "that's one of your Scandinavian gulls".
I wondered how he could tell
"They are completely different!" he told me, astonished; it was something to do with the head. "Now then, don't worry, they can't hurt you, just get a bit closer... move veeerrrryyyy slowly.. don't worry..... FOR GOD'S SAKE KEEP AWAY FROM ITS BEAK"
We caught it quite quickly, and likely saved its life: the town foxes don't miss a gull with a broken wing on a February night. I thanked the brave catcher "I won't shake your hand, if you don't mind - never a good idea to loosen my grip" and Hastings Gull Rescue disappeared into the night, a £20 donation the richer.
I surveyed the gull-poo all over our paving stones.. a job for the morning I reckoned, and hurried off down the High Street to rescue Mrs Botogol. I found her quite content, well into her second bellini.