RIP poor badger... many more of them in the garden

Yesterday morning we ran over and killed a badger. Badgers are much on our minds at the moment - our garden, and the gardens of our neighbours, are being over-run...  The sad fatality happened when we were driving over to Eastbourne, to sign the paperwork for our brand-new car - another Skoda Yeti.

How sad ..... poor badger

      I don't know what the badgers were doing running across the busy Ridge at 9.30 in the morning - why were they not safely tucked up in their sett? There were two of them - one got across safely but the other ran out just too near the car and there was no way Philosopher could avoid it. We hit it head on.
      I ran back and the poor thing was still moving, but obviously mortally wounded. A woman passing by stopped and we wondered what to do - badgers are big animals with a nasty bite, and this one was fully-grown. There was a man with a van nearby and I went across to ask him if he had a heavy weapon like a hammer to put the creature out of its misery. Indeed, he was already walking towards us with a hammer in his hand. Fortunately - this sounds horrible but it truly was the best thing - someone else drove past and ran it over again, killing it finally. The woman totally freaked out at that, so I don't know what she would have done if me or the bloke had been forced to get into mercy killing... Anyway, it was all very upsetting, and I felt close to tears all the way to Eastbourne.
     In the garden, we get almost nightly visitations from our neighbourhood badger family. Our neighbours have got a massive sett round the side of their house, and there is a subsidiary excavation behind our back hedge. Philosopher spends much time reinforcing the fence to keep them out of our garden, but recently we have discovered they can climb/jump over the gate between us and the neighbours, and get in anyway. One night Philosopher went out and surprised two of them - one jumped back over the gate, but the other panicked and rushed round the garden unable to escape until literally, it threw itself at the fence and broke a hole through.
     We have bought a wild-life camera and positioned it in the garden - took a few days to learn how to use it but it finally worked. look at these pictures!


     Once they are in the garden, they dig in the lawn for grubs and scrabble about in the vegetable patch and the plant pots - chilli powder in the pots seems to put them off.
      I do really like badgers, and I've written about them before - but they are problematic.....
      So, what of the car?  Readers may remember that we have a lurid orange Skoda Yeti. In fact, we have had it since 2012 - see this old post. It has been an excellent car - it goes well, is easy to drive, has excellent visibility and a comfortable, high driving position which we both like. It carries huge loads with ease and five people in comfort - ideal for the WI!  However, it is a 2 litre diesel - we felt it was only a matter of time before they were outlawed, and any residual value the car had would disappear. So, last Saturday we went over to the Skoda dealer in Eastbourne to see if they had a low mileage more recent petrol Yeti we could trade ours in for. The Yeti is being phased out, and Skoda have issued the last ones as high-spec limited edition models. To cut a long story short, we ended up buying a brand new one on interest-free credit, no deposit because the old car covered that! We fetch the car on Saturday, and say goodbye to our faithful Tango friend.
      The new one is metallic petrol blue - will look like this.... 

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