As those of you who follow me on Twitter already know, yesterday afternoon I was on my way to the kitchen when I happened to glance out of the front window just in time to see this guy wandering across the road:
Luckily, there was only one car trying to drive down the aforementioned road at the time, and its driver had spotted our little spiky friend and was patiently waiting for him to get out of his path. The hedgehog didn’t seem to want to do that, though, so I called for Terry, and the two of us headed out to help.
Cute, isn’t he? (The hedgehog, I mean, not Terry. Although Terry, if you’re reading this, you are ALSO cute.)
He had been headed straight for our house, but given that we’re not running a Hedgehog Hostel – or a Hogstal, as it shall henceforth be known – we figured he was lost, and, well, we didn’t really know what to do about that. We couldn’t just leave him in the middle of the road, though, so Terry ran and got an old towel (which, yes, was binned afterwards) and carefully picked him up:
And then I totally DIED of the cute, because OMG, lookit his little hands!
(The whole time we were outside the house, by the way, we could hear Rubin barking his head off inside. It was as if he somehow KNEW we were entertaining a rival animal on the property…)
“Can we keep him, Terry, can we keep him, please can we keep him?” I said. But Terry is a big ol’ meanie, so he carried the hedgehog into the woods and deposited him in a safe place.
“But how did you KNOW it was safe?” I said, later that night, when even I had got bored with repeatedly asking “Do you think the hedgehog will be OK? Are you sure? How about now?” But I was worried. I mean, he’d been headed right for the house. Maybe he… KNEW something? Or was supposed to be meeting someone there? Or… yeah, I have no idea what business a hedgehog could have with my house, to be honest, but you never know, people, you never know.
Terry pooh-poohed these ideas of mine, though, so we settled down to enjoy our Friday evening. Later that night, however, we heard Rubin barking frantically in the garden. It was his special, “Timmy’s down the well,” bark, so we headed out to see what he’d found, and…
Mama hedehog had come looking for her baby. Or perhaps had come to be revenged on us for taking her baby into the woods. Are you scared? Because I am.
(That’s not a white stripe on its back, by the way. I thought it was too when I took the photo and looked back at it on the camera, but it was actually just some weird effect of the flash…)
(When Terry got outside, he caught Rubin just about to pee on this poor hedgehog. I mean, SERIOUSLY….)
(He managed to stop him just in time.)
(I’ll stop with the parentheses now.)
(Or maybe I’ll just keep doing it, to annoy you? No? OK…)
So, of course, now I’m worried that the Big Hedehog had come looking for the Little Hedgehog. And that, having failed to find it – BECAUSE WE CARRIED IT OFF TO THE WOODS – it will, I don’t know, pine to death? And that our names will be MUD now amongst the hedgehog fraternity. For this reason, I hung around in the dark garden for much longer than was really necessary, until the hedgehog crossed into our neighbour’s garden and disappeared into a flower bed. It didn’t SEEM to be annoyed with us, but as I said: you never know, do you?
I hope they’re both OK. And that they haven’t put some powerful curse upon us for our actions that day. Because hedgehog curses are THE WORST, seriously.
(I really hope they come back for another visit, though…)