Revenge of the Killer Bunnies and the curse of WattsApp

At the height of the pandemic I posted a piece called Sunday reflection: life finds a way about a fir tree which had miraculously recovered from injuries I had expected to be terminal and suspected had been inflicted by my daughter's "Killer Bunnies."

Something - I suspected my daughter's pet rabbits as the only other animal in Cumbria capable of inflicting that kind of damage on a tree would be a deer, and it's unlikely any deer could have got into the garden - had a really good go at the lower trunk of the tree in about 2019, stripping off a lot of bark and doing enough damage to weaken the base of the fir tree and make it keel over. I had propped it back up by tying the upper part of the tree to the adjacent fence and IIRC took appropriate measures to contain the loss of sap but had not expected the tree to survive.

It did survive, and managed to repair it's base sufficiently to still be upright in March 2020 although the cords I used to tie it in that position had long since gone. And even though the lower trunk and root system must be under a considerable turning moment trying to topple it, because the lowest part of the trunk is almost horizontal before bending back close to the vertical by the time it reaches a foot above the ground.

I wrote that the determined struggle of that tree to repair it's injuries and survive is a metaphor for life itself, which in so many creatures often manages to cling on against the most terrible challenges when the odds are stacked against it.

The living creatures which we call human beings have that ability in spades. I predicted that although we would lose some of our friends, neighbours and loved ones to COVID-19, and that we would regret every one of those deaths, human society would come through the Coronavirus pandemic just as the tree in my garden recovered from the attack of the killer bunnies.

And as the saying goes, we will find that whatever does not kill us makes us stronger.

The tree is still there, and significantly more substantial than it was two years ago, and last week I took a picture of the two bunnies happily nibbling the grass at the foot of the tree. I had intended to post it on the family WattsApp group for the enjoyment of my wife and children.

Unfortunately by mistake I posted it on a WattsApp group for senior Conservative party officials instead. Causing a certain amount of amusement to colleagues. So if I traduced the bunnies they certainly have their revenge. Just goes to show you cannot be too careful what you put on WattsApp.

Oh well. At least I didn't send it to Isobel Oakeshott!


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