Tuesday 13 April 2010

Creatures Great and Small

Thank you so much, everyone, for your lovely and wise comments yesterday. I'm glad quite a few of us are in the same boat, and found all your comments reassuring and generally lovely. Thanks!

In amongst all the blogging chat, I was interested to hear your favourite woodland creatures... mine (and I have given this some thought, you can tell) oscillates between red squirrel, badger, and deer. Today it's the badger - you and me, Bloomsbury Bell, we know where it's at.

If any of you are ever in the North of England, you must pay a visit to Freshfield - we used to go there sometimes as children. It's a forest filled with red squirrels! Not sure how they've managed to keep the grey squirrels away, but it's quite a wonderful place - in my memory anyway. One of the few places I would sit quietly, apparently... these squirrels will come towards you, and eat food from your hand - oh I *need* to go on another visit there. Do you think a 24 year old would be out of place there?

Anyway. I do feel a little sorry for grey squirrels, because everyone now hates them for killing off red squirrels. Hence the sketch today (hope you like).

My housemate Mel is sitting next to me at the mo, and has plumped for the bat as her favourite woodland creature. We look for different things in animals... fluffy cuteness vs. 'mad skillz'.

I realise that today's post has had absolutely nothing to do with books... but after yesterday's intense thinking, we needed a bit of light-heartedness didn't we? If you're *desperate* to be bookish, you can think of book with a squirrel in the title. Good luck... back tomorrow with proper literature and whatnot.

[Edit: I've just remembered something! When I was searching for 'Simon Thomas' in the title-search on the Oxford Library catalogue, the nearest result was 'Simon The Squirrel Who Wouldn't Wash'...!!]


  1. Squirrel Nutkin is the only obvious one that comes to mind ... hmm ...

  2. not in the title but:


    My brother's favorite book growing up (and now).

  3. Brilliant sketch!! Gave me a real chuckle!!

  4. There is a film called La ardilla roja (The Red squirrel) released in 1993 so probably you didn't see it!

    Find out more here.

  5. 'The Big Red Squirrel and the Little Rhinoceros' by Mischa Damjan
    'The Adventures of Chatterer the Red Squirrel' by Thornton W Burgess
    'An Affair with Red Squirrels - Forty Years of Squirrelmania' by David Stapleford.

    A simple trawl on Amazon came up with these - and I'm sure I read Chatterer when I was a child. Aren't the other titles superb? You couldn't invent better!

  6. To be fair, owls are pretty cool too.

  7. Lovely sketch, and I loved reading Squirrel Nutkin to my boy when he was younger.

  8. On my side of the pond, we have the same feeling about grey squirrels-- they are rats with fluffy tails; while red squirrels are cute, feisty, and "impertinent" (a la Squirrel Nutkin in the presence of Old Brown).

  9. Scaredy Squirrel by Melanie Watt (and his 4 sequels) is my favorite picture book of this last decade. Hilarious.

  10. You appear to have repeatedly misspelt 'squizzle'.

  11. Freshfield is certainly worth a visit. That is where I was alluding to in my comment - Freshfield being part of Formby. There's a picture of a red squirrel there taken back in 2006 at http://www.flickr.com/photos/chrisbrookes/189498195/ The photo is not my own. Sadly, I didn't have a camera with me on my recent visit.

  12. Kristen - and a good choice!

    Claire - thanks very much! I'm always pleased when people comment on the sketches :-)

    Daniel - Sounds fun!

    Elise - thanks very much :-)

    Dark Puss - no, might have been strong fare for a 7 year old!

    ovw - cheat! But great titles. I'm still intrigued by Simon the Squirrel Who Wouldn't Wash...

    Mel - at last, we agree on an animal! Owls are definitely cool. I especially like it when cats look like owls.

    Jane - thank you! Doesn't Squirrel Nutkin end rather horribly? Your son was probably less squeamish than I was...

    Bet - agreed... but now I feel bad for grey squirrels

    Carin - not heard of it, but sounds like a definite winner...

    Col - oops, you're right... (squizzel or squizzle... hmm...)

    David - OH, sorry - it has been a while since I was there, so missed that they were the same.. loved the photo, by the way.

  13. The Knot Squirrel Tied


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