mardi 15 novembre 2011

Actually it wasn`t a hoot at all !!!

Well ........that`ll teach me to moan won`t it?!!! You know that old theory - that pleasure has to be evened out with a bit of pain? So.. if I enjoyed having a good old moan on Saturday then the events of the next day most definitely evened it out!

We got up early on Sunday morning for the flea market and drove off in the pitch black. Just a few lanes away from the house there was a sudden thud on the windscreen, something white splatted the front of the car, hit the front winscreen, bounced up onto the roof and into the darkness.  After the initial shock of the thud all I could think was "NOOOOOOOOOOOOO..... not an owl............ please!!!!".

We stopped the car and looked in the road and along by the hedges but could see nothing, so we started back on our journey feeling very downhearted at what had happened.

10 miles down the road we stopped in the nearest town at the 'distributeur' (cash point). Whilst Mark began to take out some cash I decided to get out of the car to take my coat off. I glanced at the roof and almost jumped out of my skin! There twisted over the luggage rail on the roof was a large barn owl. It was quite obviously dead so Mark managed to untangle it and left it in the bushes by the bank for nature to take its course and we sadly got back in the car to finish our journey. As we pulled away the feathers ruffled in the breeze - and I was absolutely bereft that this wonderful bird's life had ended in the manner it had. 

The flea market was a good one -  and I found some really pretty old treasures but I still felt quite downhearted by what had happened. We met up with Frou Frou and Mr Frou Frou who, after they had heard the tale, went off and bought me a present;  an owl paperweight presumably to torment me and to make me feel even more daughters' do!

As we set off I asked Mark to drive back past the hedges at the bank so we could at least pick him up and give him a decent burial in our garden. We arrived back at the bank only to  find this huge owl standing motionless right by the cash point!!! Mark said someone must have propped him up there for a joke.  I walked very cautiously over to look for myself - and then saw that his chest was moving!!!

Terrified of handling him we left him and drove straight to the vets...which, it being a Sunday, was closed of course and no emergency numbers readily to hand. The gendarmerie (police) and pompiers (fire) stations were our next call but, again, both were closed and shuttered. We rushed home and I managed to find the number for a bird sanctuary - which happened to be more than 40 miles away!

The  owner said that he was away attending a bird of prey exhibition  but if I could get the owl into a box and deliver it to him on Monday he would do what he could. He said I could, in the short term, give him some raw chicken meat if I managed to catch him.

So............ back to the cash point with a huge box and thick leather gloves to hand. We found him even perkier, trying to walk and flapping one wing! We managed to box him up and brought him home and placed him in the barns overnight - and safe, of course, from Charles le Baron du Breuil!

I fully expected to find him dead the next morning but no; there he was .......very perky, just able to hop on one leg, but clearly unable to fly.

So we have made the 100 mile round trip and he is now recovering from a broken wing in very experienced hands.

So pleasure........................................

followed by pain...............................

...........followed by relief!!

14 commentaires:

  1. Oh God what a trauma ! I adore them too so pleased it had a happy ending xxx well done

  2. Hi Linda
    I wonder how many people went to the Ste Mere Eglise cashpoint and ignored him?

  3. Oh my goodness, i couldnt bear it....& then I could!!... I would of been mortified too, but can't beleive he was ok...and you managed to catch him, what a tale x

  4. Glad the story had a happy ending. When we lived in Devon one of our cats attacked a bat. I managed to get it away from her and rang the local bat group who gave me the number of the bat lady! To cut a long story short I with my neighbour who is terrified of bats drove in the dead of night to this obscure village in the middle of nowhere and found the bat lady. I was told it probably wouldn't survive, but a few weeks later I received a phone call to say could I come and collect the bat and release it back in the area, which I duly a happy ending for the poor little bat.
    Jo xx

  5. I can`t believe he survived the impact let alone the drive to town!!! are so like me...i couldn`t rest until I knew he was being cared for! I had visions of me having to take mice from the Baron to feed him with!

  6. That is something that would play on my mind for a long time. I can't believe you went back and it was alive! John hit a blackbird 2 years ago, yes 2 years ago but I still think about it. I had images of it's family thinking, where's dad? OMG, don't get me going. So glad your's had a happy ending. Also, one year our cat brought home a baby pigeon, GOD it was ugly, and had a few chew marks in it but I kept the thing in our bathroom for 5 weeks until it was big and strong enough to fly off, which it did successfully. Such a rewarding experience, despite a bathroom covered in pigeon shit!
    Well done Shirley, Owls are such wonderful creatures, you did the right thing. You will remember that forever :-)

  7. Oh Di!!!
    I can imagine you in the bath with a pidgeon on your head!!

  8. Gosh, what a drama but so pleased it had a happy ending.

  9. A wonderful tale with a wonderful result. So glad the owl was OK. Barn Owls are such beautiful creatures. Ann x

  10. Oh poor Shirley, you are looking really rough in that first photo, this trauma seems to have really taken it out of you! ;) xxx

    ps.I take my [feathered] hat off to you...
    our country lanes are full of dead birds, mostly pheasants, and no one seems to care!

  11. Hi you didn`t know I still had that wrap round apron and curlers!!

  12. Dear Shirley,
    God bless you! So many people just would not have been bothered to help this beautiful creature! Thank you for such a heartening story ...

  13. You are wonderful. But we knew that about you anyway.

    Now the Wol does too. How lovely of you to care so much. Bless you.

    Fhi x

  14. 30 years ago I hit a barn owl while driving over Exmoor, that brief 10 second awful event is vividly remembered quite often so I'm glad you and your owl have had a better outcome.
    Big gold star for your caring efforts....wish everyone could be so.