This morning has been spent doing a bit of rough-and-ready DIY – there’s always a list of jobs to do, mainly due to the climate, the local critters and the kids being responsible for much of the rest. First up was fixing a hole under the sink unit which the Night-time Special Ops Rat Regiment had sniffed out and subsequently embarking on rubbish raids to the bin. For the last few nights we’ve been awakened by squeaks and rustlings as the rubbish is rifled and packets of crackers pilfered. The rightful owner of these particular crackers, Coco the dog, has turned out to be quite an effective rat and mouse catcher, she normally gets two or three a week and spends a good half hour tossing each one around the garden, a sort of four-legged version of an orca playing with a dead seal. I don’t think she’s tried to eat one yet, but maybe if she knew they’d pinched her crackers she might consider it.
One job still on the list is a dog-proof area for the bins outside, which Coco occasionally raids, maybe in the hope of attracting more mice and rats for her play-time. Waking up in the morning to see shredded diapers strewn around the compound fills me with a deep sense of joy which increases exponentially with every poo and pee stained particle I pick up.
My second job today was a simple shelf rack thing for shoes and flip flops which normally get left lying outside the door – far too tempting for Coco when the mice are not coming out to play. With the shelf fixed to the outside wall they’re now safely out of chewing range.
With the kids we’ve had to rearrange to complete house to keep inquisitive fingers out of stuff we don’t want them in. What was their bedroom is now our office and changing room, our bedroom is now the kids bedroom, and the lounge now has our bed in it, which is handy for monitoring night-time kitchen bin visitors. Some of the door handles and locks had been wrenched half off so I completed the job and put simple nail-and-string locks at the top of the doors out of the kids reach. I have flyscreens to fix – thanks to burglars, kids, and the wife – to stop further potential bugs, mice and gecko’s gaining unlawful entry, plus louvres to fix which have been destroyed by endless yanking and climbing.
Today though has been a small success in the never-ending battle with kids and critters, and cyclone season is just about done so we can rest easy on that front until November/December. I guess in 20 years time I will be looking back with a smile and thinking “Damn, those poo-picking days of destruction were such awesome fun !!” I guess there’s a good chance I’ll be wearing my own diaper by that time.
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Underwater Photography with Heather Sutton
Corals, cabbages and clowns abound in a kaleidoscope of colours to treat those who take the plunge into any of the many dive sites up and down the Somosomo Strait, Vuna Reef, and around Qamea, Laucala and Matagi Islands. Take a pictorial tour with photos from Heather Sutton.