Rachel’s Wanderings in Spain Ups and Downs (and Ins and Outs) of (Animal) Life in Spain
I missed my deadline, not for the first time, last week but this time with my alloted article writing time on the agenda I’d headed home only to find the internet and phone weren’t working. The night before it was fine, in the morning it was off, I reported the problem, technicians had called my mobile and I assured them someone was at home. It didn’t occur to me that they wouldn’t be able to fix it.
Apparently we had a double whammy, and it was only us! Our five or six week old fibre cable had been chewed! Not only had something climbed up the post and chewed up our cable but two posts had holes in them from woodpeckers. One has a hole front to back, when I have a moment that coincides with having internet I’ll be doing some research into woodpeckers.
Just a bit further north in Jaen province in the Sierra Morena they can not use wooden posts because of the woodpeckers, our technician was far more amused than we were that we had a problem with them here. But what was it that climbs up the posts and chews the cables. Rats? Pole cats? We don’t know but they go up and our internet goes down. That is twice now.
We’ve a long history of internet and phone problems, having gone from a line service, to a radio service to now having fibre optics, we thought our pretty poor service at times was gone forever – but no. They installed the lines, came to fit our fibre cable, found they needed a new box, came back three weeks later with a new box, set it all up only to discover an animal had chewed through the cable! Another week or two later we had a new cable and all was hunky dory for – at least five weeks then, bam. Another animal up a post and our internet and phone down. Again. And it was Friday. No action until Monday. Who would live in the countryside? Why would a small animal climb a tall post? Why would a woodpecker peck treated wooden posts? Why our line? And so the musings go on. At least I can write without being online, but when I found out I couldn’t send the article which was due, I didn’t even finish it!!
There is never a dull moment here. Perhaps sometimes a bit too close to nature. Like the time hubby plastered the outside bathroom ceiling and that night a little bat hung upside looking at me when I went in, obviously being unable to get into its normal spot that was now plastered up. Or the baby snake that fell out of a pile of roof tiles I was carrying onto the ground by my bare footed flip flops. Or the larger snake that came in over the step when I opened the front door. I didn’t think I was a shrieker but I have to admit that I seem to do so when faced with snakes, bats and rats no, but snakes seems create a noisier reaction.
When the snake came into the house I must have made a noise because the two older boys came thundering down the stairs to see me up on a bench with the little one. I’m still not sure how I got up there, but there I was. My eldest who must have been ten or eleven ran out of the room again, then came back with an empty water bottle, took off the top and put the open top down near the snake which went happily and quickly into the hole, the top was put on and everyone was happy. Even the cat was relieved and played with the snake safely in the bottle when it wouldn’t go close to it when loose! I asked where he had learnt that trick (that was pre-internet days) and he said that is how his Spanish friends caught them in the streams and pools. Snakes like holes so they go into them to escape danger. I was so glad he was there and had had practice at gathering snakes. I haven’t had to put that trick to use myself and hope not to have to, but it’s a good life skill to have in rural Spain.
We were so chuffed to get fibre optics out here in the sticks but now I’m not so sure that it will be as good as we thought. Roll on getting our connection back – it only took four days – next it will be new concrete posts we think. Meanwhile hubby is inventing a tube-like gadget to wrap around the posts in hope that will save any more ups and downs.
So happy to be back online.
B C ing U in two weeks ( I hope!)