Now that Julie's birthday is over, I can think about Christmas. Stage 1 of the decorations is done, the lights are up, festooning the front of the house. These icicles have a number of settings, including one really frantic flashing set that could give an epileptic an attack! It is slightly hysterical, and I love it.
Getting those lights up is always fun. This is my job, as I do ladders rather better than someone else who lives here. A couple of years ago I put cup-hooks up there, so now it is simply a matter of getting the ladder out from the side of the house, and hooking the lights up.
Which brings me to the dark side. The side passageway is rarely used. It is very narrow. The ladder must be brought from about the middle of the house to the front. I have blogged earlier about the rat problem. There on the path was a dead rat. Or what was left of it. A kind of awful rat-smear. Smelly. "Yikes," I shouted, to the man of the house. "there is a decomposed rat here and I can't deal with it, and I am just going to pretend it isn't here!" Truly, I am not good at dealing with dead rats. Julie and I share an early Portia the Rat Killer story... no, let's not go there.
The Man of the House got a shovel and broom, and dealt with it like the brave hero he is. The corpse was taken to the railway line, under the fence, where it will decompose further. Deodorant spray was deployed.
I continued to hang the lights - a dirty job even without the wildlife - and am very happy with the results. End of Phase 1 Christmas decorations. Picture below. You are spared pictures of the rat.