Thursday, February 11, 2010

An Ode to Snails

I was only thinking the other day: how nice to be a Snail? You have your own place, no job, no worries, NO CREAKY BONES, no bones at all in fact, and you get to leave a sparkly path wherever you go. (OK, who am I kidding, I'm usually to be found at the end of a trail of spilt glitter, beads and sequins) But, whatever, I kind of envy their freedom. However, every life style has it's perils and I'd forgotten about Blackbirds, the yellow rimmed eye of peril in the sky. Many a sunny afternoon lazing in the garden I've wondered at that crack-crack-crack down on the dry stone wall, only to find a Blackbird thwacking the be-jesus out of some poor shell dweller. They sit up on the chimney tops at sundown, trilling their beautiful farewell to the day and you'd think butter wouldn't melt in their beaks! Sooty snail nemesis.

I've always had a soft spot for snails, as a child I used to collect them and paint their shells with my mothers nail varnish to tell them apart. I'd make them a lovely flower arbour to live in, a large terracotta dish filled with dandelion blooms and daisys for them to navigate. I'd get called in for lunch and when I'd come back my supposedly slow moving pets would have fled the arena. Not sure what the Blackbirds thought of the varnish, possibly I saved the snail's lives - as the Blackbirds mistook them for free roaming human toes and stayed well away. I'd like to think so.



Georgina said...

I guess I was never a fan of mother hated them because of the damage they did in her garden. Sooo, once she demonstrated the art of salt on those little critters, we helped her exterminate them...yuck!! Nowadays, I just leave them alone because I remembered the messy puddles left over!!! Besides, what an awful way to die!!

Yve said...

Aawwww, Georgina you were a little monster! Glad you've seen the error of your ways though :o) I'm no gardening expert but my mum is, she has a huge garden and she loves snails, she says you just need to give them something to keep their mind off the flowers. Not sure what that entails, snail bingo perhaps? :o)

Linda in New Mexico said...

This is going to be an Animal Planet turtles just love snails...they always have big slimey smiles after eating and all. ewwwww. I even pay the neighbor kids to collect them. Sorta like a lion's mother paying the pride to collect wildebeast. Sorry. I too think they are beautiful and they must be tasty.

Yve said...

You are two naughty Blackbirds! Bad girls!!!!