Saturday, October 25, 2008

Tit for Tat

We have a rabbit problem. A big rabbit problem. Most have now moved underneath the shipping container that we use for storage and are undermining the shed but they've left a warren in the back paddock that's too dangerous to mow over let alone allow a horse to fall into. The fuckers have built a warren up the back tantamount to a Florida condominium and bigger than the World Square Apartments in George Street so before I can bring horses back, they need to be demolished.

And I have a horsey problem. My ponies are like Laurel and Hardy. A fat Welsh Mountain pony that survives on an oily rag and is about to founder because he steals food and a neglected Arab who needs a bit of feeding up. In fact Chippy is the only horse that I've seen with a visible belly button!

Old Laurie is doing well on his Coprice diet and uber pricey lucerne hay and the ribs are now covered after just 3 weeks but I need to bring him home to avoid a one hour round trip every night to feed and to cut down on the expense. Having him at home means I can feed twice or three times a day, avoid driving after work and quarantine fat boy.

Ever since the drought, hay has been about $25 a bale (they eat half a bale a day at their current digs) and the Coprice pellets $26 for 25 kilos. Fed at 3 kilos a day, it doesn't go far and greedy chops keeps stealing it. My neighbour has a smaller paddock so I can quarantine fatso Chippy but the two can still hang around and snooze together. They've been paddock buddies for 13 years so full on separation would upset them big time. I know, I'm a sap and they should go to the glue factory but I just canna doit Captain! (Thrifty are you paying attention)

I have an overgrowth problem (nope I'm not referring to a need for a bikini wax although that area could do with some attention given the onset of Spring). The back paddock is looking like a forest so it's $350 to hire a Bobcat and driver to demolish the rabbit resort, another $500 for a slasher to bring the weeds under control . . .hang on . . *brainwave* - Son is a landscaper. Son's boss has a Backhoe and a Bobcat. Horses eat grass ergo no need for a slasher. Well it took a while for the penny to drop - I'm a bit slow on the uptake but Adam finally asked his boss if he could 'borrow' the tools of the trade for some work at home. Thanks Toddles . . .

Here is a nanoportion of the problem:





Imagine getting your fetlocks stuck in that! Let alone the tunnels beneath that resemble the Viet Cong's efforts beneath Saigon only without the wok's and sleeping quarters! Although I wouldn't have been surprised if he'd dug up a few bunk beds and a dining table. The solution? This morning Adam borrowed the work truck (he might be smelly and messy and stink up my kitchen with his garlic addiction but he's mighty handy - he does put the toilet seat down.) . . .

This has to be every little boy's wet dream. A truck, a digger and a Bobcat! (We all know what the big boys dream about!) When he was a tot, he loved playing with his Tonka Diggers in the sand pit and blew raspberry noises until his chin developed a dribble rash. No dribble today. First out came the digger and an attempt to remove an old tree stump that was clearly similar to an iceberg with massive roots beneath so we resolved to paint it orange and leave it be. (Not for the horses, for the tractor - we' ve buggered more than one tractor blade on unseen stumps!)



Then to the serious stuff. About a 15 metre square, now deserted rabbit warren with holes that could easily break a leg if you fell in one . . .naturally whilst painting a blue spray area for the lad to work in, I did! Fall in, not break a leg.


Once excavated, the fun bit . . . out comes the Bobcat which looked like more fun than a ride at Luna Park than a landscaping tool . . Look mum, two wheels!

Fill it in and smooth it over . . . .


Job's done in about an hour but packing up takes about the same time. Fitting a digger, bobcat, drills, bits, wheelbarrows and ramps onto the truck is a precision exercise. First you put the 'bits' into the bucket (which weigh a tonne mind - so of course I watched and took photographs and offered moral support "No wonder you're tired at night sweetheart. I have no idea how you do this every day! *sigh and empathy ooze*) No wonder he's developing great guns!


Then back the thing up the ramps which are about 25cms wide . . .


Then back the digger . . . .

And finally, secure the load . . .


Might seem a little pedestrian to you but today he saved me almost $1000 so board payment is suspended this month! And there's something rather wonderful knowing that a boy who grew up without much male influence is so resourceful and blokey.

The saving on board incidentally gave him enough funds to go out and buy Guitar Hero III and two guitars . . . well deserved twanging to my mind. Well c'mon he could have been an Investment Banker! Thank you darling . . next week we'll fix the fence!

Don't you love the Royal 'we'. Cut me some slack now, I did 10 loads of filthy washing and changed his sheets! That's Tit for Tat in my book!

26 comments:

Nick said...

Jeez, a serious problem with them pesky rabbits. Reminds me of the guy in London who had dug a maze of tunnels under his house and the road outside. The council had to stop him before the house and road collapsed. Nowt so queer as folk.

Absolute Vanilla (and Atyllah) said...

Bloody hell, that's handy having a son who can do things like that! As for the rabbits, you need to get a hound who'll hunt and terrorise the fluffy buggers, or a few foxes...

Miles McClagan said...

Ah, I'm sure my Mum would rather have a son to amuse her with a witty quip (ie I'd be utter shite at that kind of thing)

Bimbimbie said...

Glad we have hares and not rabbits - didn't realise the size of their tunneling. Hurrar for Tonka toys *!*

Grannymar said...

Urgent!

Send son stop

Garden needs makeover stop

Reward Grannymar Toyboy badge stop!

Thriftcriminal said...

Looks like mad fun! Now get him a mid powered air rifle and you can have rabbit stew for a few months.

Ces said...

Oh I wish I was 24 again and single and Adam is not a toddler or a baby. Yes, I absolutely adore men who stink because they just built the Golden Gate bridge. My son is like that, he can work. My husband is the mental kind so just hires.

By the way, it looks like you live in a town all by yourselves with that rambling ranch home and all the fields and trees. Wow! (Except you have spiders and probably snakes). I cannot believe those rabbits carved that tunnel. Maybe Osama's Been Laden is hiding there? No wonder they can't find him in Afghanistan. Are you sure the rabbits were not burried alive? Why can't you just have a dog or a cat for a pet? Why do you have horses who eat up your grocery budget? Oh I forgot, you are Australian. Hehe.

Matt said...

Thats Some Serious Problem! Glad its sorted now ..... Just catching up on your blog now :S

kj said...

horses, rabbits, bobcats, and sons: you have it all, baino!

Baino said...

You know they're so cute Nick but there are so many. It's not their fault they're a feral pest but you wouldn't believe the damage. I'm just waiting for the shed to drop half a metre due to the lack of subsoil!

AV Oh Yeah . . handy man indeed if I can get him working instead of partying. I have two hounds, they're hopeless. Slow "oh I've got bindy in my paw" useless! Foxes can't keep up with the wascally wabbits.

Miley now c'mon, you can erm, write without using punctuation, you can eat fairy floss without throwing up and you have a SPA! Oh Yeah . .chick magnet!

Bimbimbie we have hares too, don't they live in burrows? Tonka's rule ..hence the thrill of being able to actually drive a Bobcat, never seen him so intense.

GM . .would if I could but I have to 'book' him to do my work! Plus he's messy and doesn't pick his towels up and leaves dirty fingerprints all over the cupboard and fridge. *must get kennel for son*

Thrifty I think he has a little thrill driving the Bobcat particularly there was a Crusty Demon's zeal in there and a 'what can I squish next' glint in his eye!
Ces so many questions . .He doesn't stink . .his room does! Yeh he's not afraid of hard work I don't know how he does it 6-4 on a daily basis frankly. Actually we live in the burbs surrounded by 1/4 acre blocks, just a few five acre holdings waiting to be subdivided. Tell you there's an alternative world down there . .ever read Alice in Wonderland? And horses are . . fun when theyy're young but like parents . . you have to look after them whent they get old. Loves me old boy I does.

Matt? Which Matt? Mr R? My man in Canberra? My favourite Helldesker of all time (next to Kahler) Matt the Rat? Reveal please but thanks for dropping by anyway.

Oh yes kj I just hope he doesn't leave home while I'm still here. Mind you I managed to get dirt on my white linen shirt thanks to the residue from his landscaping gear in the washing machine so it's not all hearts and roses.

I was actually surprised that after 3 months he's got his truck licence and can 'man' a Bobcat, build a retaining wall, pave a path, build a deck and backhoe a trench with such dexterity, he surprises me constantly! And all that time at University wasting brain space on a degree!

Maria said...

Baino, I think this is always the same probl3m when you visit another country.
It is so time-consuming to see at least some of the main attractions and very often there is no time for an additional trip.
It was the first time that I visited those caves in my life. We spent two weeks in the region, mailny relaxing, swimming, mountain climbing, and making a trip every now and then.
Fortunately, blooging is such a good way for virtual travelling and saves a lot of time :)

Maria said...

I just read you tit for that story - It's marvellous!

"blooging" is "blogging", of course :=)

Jay said...

Aah .. don't you just love it when your boys grow up and start helping out in a seriously useful way? You did good raising him, Baino! Lack of male influence or no! Looks quite sufficiently blokey to me!! ;)

NYD said...

I wonder what Bugs Bunny would do?

Moon said...

When I read your first line, I thought you had a problem with 'big' rabbits .... and quite clearly you do .... poor old Rascally Rabbits... they spend all their time setting up home, and then BAM !, your boy decides to relocate them ... If I was a bunny, I'd be very pissed off, and be organising an uprising !!

Nice to see Boys Toys .... I'd be up for that !!

Not too sure I'd be to keen to tackle the Problem 'bush' though ... do you need to get some quotes for that job !!!!!

Dave said...

Wow this was amazing! Thanks for sharing. I was quite amazed at this story.

laughingwolf said...

win/win from what i can see, baino :)

Bear Naked said...

At my hairdressers shop, they save al the hair that is swept up for a lady who swears that putting it down keeps the rabbits away.
I'd never heard that before, have you?

Bear((( )))

Quickroute said...

Bunnies are cute until they start multiplying. I'm not a big rabbit stew fan either so can't help you eat them

Ces said...

Hehe, I did not mean to say that he stinks, I meant to say that there is a certain attractive quality in a man who perspire because he is doing something productive.

Megan said...

I have insane admiration for the boy right now. Just the unloading and reloading all that on the truck looks difficult as hell, let alone everything else!

steph said...

Never mind those effing bunnies...

Give Laurie and Chippy a big hug from me and I think Adam deserves a round of applause too.

T'was listening to the radio yesterday, Baino, and thought of you...

"Those who are victorious DESERVE champagne...

Those who are losers NEED champagne..."

Tit for Tat to you! :-D

Baino said...

Maria you can bloog if the mood takes you! And yes, I'm travelling vicariously through a few bloggers these days. Doesn't cost me a cent!

Well Jay as a widow he's lived in a house of moon cycles for 22 years and still hasn't got in touch with his feminine side! Thanks in no small part to his Grandpa I suspect. Useful he is . . .

G'day NYD . . probably buy one of those ACME bombs and blow up the bob cat!

Moon the warren has been vacated in favour of the basement flats under the shed! (which is actually a double garage on a concrete slab.) I'm fully expecting the shed to descend 18 inches into the subsoil any day! Erm, no quotes required - you wouldn't catch me dead in a bikini! Oh wait . .does my bum look big in that?

G'day Dave . . amazing? Erm, just a normal Saturday at the Homestead.

Quite right Wuffa. Now all I have to do is find someone to ferry the horses over! (ouch that'll cost)

Are you serious Bear? Maybe it's the 'human' smell or something. I can tell you they're not afraid of dogs! The problem was horses getting their legs caught in the holes so it all had to be dug and levelled.

Quickie they're a huge problem on my little block mainly due to the encroachment of civilisation. They're bold too . .even seen them on the verandah!

Oh silly Ces! I knew what you meant! He can be a bit stinky, I know, I wash his sock!

He did very well actually Megan. It's the first time he's done it unaided, impressed I was. (oops, Yoda moment there)

Haha Steph, that's a win win in my book! Although I've had to switch to screw top Chardonnay because my arthritic wrists find opening champers painful! *sob*

Annie Ha said...

guitar hero 3? But guitar hero 4 comes out tomorrow!

Baino said...

Not out till November for us Annie. Besides, I'm trying to get him to buy Rockband. I can't play but I can sing (well I think I can, like every other drunk in the bar).

Annie Ha said...

you will never ever ever regret purchasing Rockband.
Except maybe every morning when you're exhausted because you stayed up too late playing Rockband the night before.