Sccrrrrratttchchch!!! Ch-ch-ch-ch-ch-scratttchhhh… ssccccrrraaaaaape!! This is a weak and mild imitation of the sound we woke up to this morning. Declan was sure it was outside the window – I swear it was near or under my side of the bed! This went on between stretches of silence for about 40 minutes. Having seen no evidence of the presence of any rodent type creatures in the house all summer, my hope is that Declan is right and we just had a bit of bird activity in the stones outside. Perhaps the pheasant, which paid our house guests a visit each evening in May but has only darted past our car a few times across our bumpy road, has returned to prepare a winter home nearby. Yes, that’s the ticket. It had to be that beautiful pheasant!

The Starry Night by Vincent van Gogh courtesy

Just as every cloud has its silver lining, several hours earlier Eoin and I stood in the darkness of the wee hours outside our country cottage gazing up at a clear, night sky that sparkled with billions of stars of every size… glowing, twinkling and even shooting! Eoin had never seen such a sight in his entire life and I only have vague memories of viewing it as a child. I wouldn’t trade the starry night for a quieter morning, no matter what was making that horrifying sound!