Thursday, 21 January 2010

The hole at the bottom of the garden

One winter's afternoon I found a hole at the bottom of the garden. A hole too big for a rabbit. A badger maybe?

So I fetched my trowel and dug a little, just to see if I could find out what lived there.

As I scraped around the entrance, the soil fell away by itself and the hole got wider and deeper. Little steps of earth had formed, looking a bit like stairs. I should stop, I thought. But I couldn't. What could possibly live down here?

I forgot to have any lunch, so busy was I digging. I started to notice that the hole was divided into areas, almost like rooms. And the rooms had little mounds of earth in them, almost like tables and chairs.

The afternoon drew on. I felt uncomfortable about digging any more so I jumped down into my hole and called out 'Hallo?' There was no answer. I tried again. 'Halloooo?'

Then I heard a faint 'hallo?' I looked around me but couldn't see anyone. Again it called, and it seemed to be coming from the direction of my house. I peered into the gloom and realised I'd left the back door open all this time. Did my eyes deceive me, or did I see a tiny person standing there, looking as puzzled as I did? Quickly, I started shovelling earth back into the hole, but before I covered it completely I pulled out a pen and a scrap of paper from my back pocket and scrawled on it; 'Sorry about the mess.'

Then I put my trowel away and returned to the house. The door was still open and there were muddy little footprints all over the place. Stuck to the TV was a tiny note. 'I'm sorry too,' it read.

I went to the window and waved, just in case.

1 comment: