The 21 delusion—a Poem

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The knees make creaky noises

As they take on flights of stairs;

And the eyes need arms that lengthen

To make glasses see in pairs.


Jogging is now  power walking

With a sometimes gentle stroll;

Heart-pumping runs to hill-tops passed,

Keep breathing more the goal!


Fit’s not for want of trying

But the gym’s just too much trouble;

Time excuses found, so not to blame, besides

They’ve lengthened miles to double!


House and garden are my fitness school

Weights?.. a heavy vacuum cleaner;

Mulch spreading, weeding, bend and stretch

If only I was keener.


Groans on rising from comfy chair

Bone crunching, body’s way to cope;

What do you mean  not 21 anymore?

Go wash mouth out with soap!


*Mindful that the brain and body don’t always agree about the number of years that have passed.


Junkie snails do it in letterbox!

With more than the average  share of snails in the garden, I guess the laws of averages meant that some of them would have severe problems, although the appeal of the letterbox was an initial mystery to me. I may never have been alerted to the issue, had it not been for starting on the garden tidy-up, which seems to have stirred up the snail population; so you see I blame autumn.

Collecting my mail from the box the other day I noticed envelopes looked a little “moth-eaten”, sort of nibbled along the sealed edge of the letters. Well, apart from a fleeting image of the postie chewing on the edges of envelopes (which was swiftly dismissed, as anytime I have seen the postie he seemed a perfectly normal bloke, not at all the sort to suck envelopes)….but I digress……

The same happened over the next few days, until on Wed. the culprit was caught in the act…..or rather two of them were. There; intently (and slowly) were two snails, munching their way along the gum edge of envelopes like it was irresistable!!…..must be something in the glue me thinks, as I practice my throwing arm with the wee offenders. Not that they went very far, as I ‘throw like a girl’ (no offence Ladies, tis just a saying).

The glue on envelopes must contain the equivalent of mollusc crack, because the little blighter’s were back the next day (or 2 that looked very similar…….but not being an aficionado on invertebrates I couldn’t swear to their identity in a lin-up); only this time the letters were frayed and they seem to have finished with the glue fix and moved onto making more offenders!, or maybe they weren’t humping, just hugging. Now I was going to take drastic action, bring out the big guns and use the Salt; have you ever seen what happens to live slugs and snails when you add salt?…..well it kind of dissolves them  in a bubbly frenzy and its all rather disgusting so not for folk with a weak stomach. I resisted the urge , as convinced myself that dissolved snail and any consumed glue may fix them to the spot for all time, and didn’t want copulating snails as a permanent  feature on the letter box.

This time my drop stomp sent them off with a satisfying crunch (they were still attached to each other, so am sure they went off happy). A good can of bug spray and an exclusion/ protective  circle of salt around the base of said box seems to have done the trick, as mail since has been intact. Now that I know how attractive the  glue is to snails , I am going to write them a we b*gg*r -off’ note on the back of an envelope and stuff it in the bug trap by the veggie patch, convinced it will attract more than the beer that’s in there now!  * I was mindful that all creatures can have a fatal attraction and am chuffed to have a new meaning for ‘snail mail’.