Sunday 12th March 2006

I didn’t sleep much last night. I just kept thinking about my den and about whether I was going to need planning permission from the Forest Council. The problem is, as they met yesterday they are not due to meet for another three months and I was hoping it would be finished long before that. I could just go ahead and hope no one notices but then I can’t invite anyone round, or have a nice fire burning in my fireplace and if they find out they might make me take it down again and that would be an awful shame.

One good piece of news this morning was hearing that the escaped convict hedgehog has been recaptured. Apparently he walked up to one of the brushes, that the stoats were using to clear up after the forest council, thinking it was another hedgehog and asked if it could help him hide. Well the stoats set the alarm off straight away and the police badger was round in no time. Hedgehog looks so sweet, it is hard to think of him as a hardened criminal, but squirrel says he can be quite a prickly character.

There is a great game we play when we go for a walk that my mistress mistakenly thinks she is in charge of. She calls it ‘Dog on a stick’ but I prefer to call it ‘Keeping my mistress where I know where she is’. Basically I get her to find me a nice big stick and then I let her hold one end of it while I alternate between chewing it and hanging from it. At any point in time I know I have her at precisely one stick distance away which is a nice and safe place for me to keep an eye on her. It seems to keep her amused for a long time. If the stick breaks I get her to find me another and so the game goes on.

I went round to see squirrel to talk to her about my den and as always she was wonderful. She says I will definitely need planning permission but she will help me with all the work involved in filling in the forms but it will certainly mean I cannot start building it just yet. It is not as bad as I had first thought, although the Forest Council do not meet again until June they do have another meeting in six weeks just to consider planning applications because it is such a busy time of year for building. That should give us enough time to get the drawings done properly and the building work thoroughly costed. Squirrel says she will help me open a savings account too so that I can save all my pocket money to pay for it.