One of many broods of indian runners in the kitchen
Yesterday evening I received a phonecall from a woman who needed some advice about ducklings. Her son had brought home four and she was in a pickle of what to feed them and how to keep them warm.
I gave her the info she needed ( scrambled egg is a great stopgap for hungry ducklings) and wished her well.
Ducklings are notoriously dirty little creatures , I warned her, especially if they are kept in the house. They have a somewhat annoying skill of flinging shit with their feet and it is easy to catch salmonella from them, if you don't wash your hands properly.
Nine years ago , after a particularly nasty bout of diarrhoea, I had to take a stool specimen into the labs at work to see if I had caught a nasty bug from my own ducklings who were being nursed in the dog crate in the kitchen. The sample was " placed" in a small plastic specimen jar and was neatly labelled with my name, nhs number and the words faecal specimen on the side. I placed it on the dashboard of the old berlingo and went out to complete a few jobs.before setting off for the hospital.
Now, I had forgotten about the container until I had stopped to let Olwenna Banks Hughes and Gwyneth Jones into the car. The two old ladies had walked along London Road a way and as Olwenna's fat ankles looked even more swollen than usual I offered them a lift home.
As we turned up High Street, the stool sample rolled noisily along the dashboard from its resting place, first one way then the other and both old ladies stopped their chatter to silently watch it on its journey underneath the windscreen.
I said nothing and neither did they.
The " shit in a pot" incident was never referred to again