Thursday, 8 July 2010

Forty-seven different ways to die while pond dipping

Gawdhelpus. If yesterday wasn't bad enough, what with the killers that lie waiting for us down the local spoil heap, then I get another ear hole full of it today.

I take the kids off to a pond dipping session run by our local parks department. Normally I won't say a dickey bird against them, they are so lovely and kind and tolerant to the mad people.

But the leader turns up today without pots, without field guides, without pencils, papers, clipboards, or sense of audience.

We get a ten minute health and safety list of how dangerous we are about to become while holding a net on a stick.

Because did you know? You could trip over an old bicycle hidden in the reeds, or drown in a puddle, or be knocked unconscious, or be infested with rat wee, or swallow pond water without thinking, or be splashed in any number of ways into open wounds that are pouring with blood, or slip on mud, or fall over each other, or have someone's eye out and they would be blind and fall into the pond and be licked by rats and we would all DIE.

All this could indeed happen. But the twelve adults looking on would DO NOTHING because by then we have all decided to take up occupations as murderers and gone stalking people to kidnap and shove in car boots.

That could happen too.

Or we could bloody well get on with it, go pond dipping, then come home and order the field guides ourselves over the internet.

PS. We found a newt.


sharon said...

Ah, but having been warned, you cannot then sue the Parks Dept if any of those things actually happen!

So, how are you dealing with the Rats' Pee Disease?

Ceri said...

We were given baby wipes to deal with any possible germs and diesases that dwelt in the canal. Parents and children alike contented themselves with a little sneer.

Rachel M. said...

huh! guess my dad missed this tutorial when he took us pond dipping and inner tubing down mountain streams where the worst atrocity was scrapped knees when water was low and rocks were plentiful. We learned to wear shoes to save our feet.