Ted’s Water Feature (OS009)

I’m still busy looking for gainful employment after walking out from my previous job.

The full gory details of when and why this happened are in my short story. I’ve not had any luck with finding any gainful employent so far. However, I’m keeping myself busy with previously neglected hobbies such as gardening, decorating and DIT (Do It The’sen – as I knew it when I lived in Yorkshire).

I decided that I need to do something with my garden. It’s just grass and paving at the moment and looks OK but let down by a pile of variously sized plant pots, some broken and others with long expired plants. Totally uninspiring. My neighbour’s garden puts mine to shame. They have an impressive water feature; it’s more of a pond really and has been quite the talking point of the area. Rumours about its origin abound due to the sheer size, I guess. The neighbours won’t talk about it, which I guess has resulted in much speculation. Various gossip circulating suggest it’s:

  • where an ancient standing stone once stood, recklessly destroyed and disposed of by my neighbours.
  • the result of a small meteor strike.
  • caused by the crash of a small Cessna aircraft.
  • an ancient animal trap dug by primatives when dinosaurs roamed around Manchester (before Manchester was there, that is).
  • the entrance to a lead mine, now flooded.
  • formed by an explosion in a gunpowder factory which once stood there.
  • the entrance to underground aquifer to a lake far under the Pennines. One local reported seeing a creature with a long neck and a hump protruding from the water. Mind you, he regularly sees things on his way back from the pub.
  • an ancient well which became infected causing sickness to the whole community.
  • the entrance dug by a criminal gang intent on tunnelling into a bank vault. Strange as the nearest bank is in the next town.
  • dug by mutant moles, grown to enormous size by consuming toxic chemicals from the local chemical works. Crazy one.
  • an abandoned bomb shelter. Not just any bomb shelter but a reserve bunker for Bletchley park (where the code breakers were based in the second world war). Some say that there is a cypher machine, a war room and enough armaments to repel an army down there. A guy was arrested a while ago wearing flippers and snorkel, entering the pond to retrieve whatever lies beneath. That’s my favourite image, guaranteed to make me smile.

Rumours were spreading like Mug wort at one point. Even those who scoff at the rumours would never go near the pond. It’s like fear of the unknown. Maybe they’ve watched too many X-Files. I think there is something about this area which makes people susceptible to strange beliefs. Apparently, towards the end of the second world war, panic ensued when someone reported a U-Boat in the Manchester Ship Canal. Fortunately, it was just an old narrow boat which leaked a bit too much and sank.

Intrigued by the rumours, I was talking to my neighbour recently and asked him about his water feature. After some consideration he said, “I will tell you as long as you keep it to yourself.”

“I promise, Scout’s honour.” Strange promise as I’ve never been a Scout or know what a Scout’s honour is.

“I don’t tell anyone because I enjoy hearing the crazy speculation about the pond. The real answer is very mundane. I warn you; it will disappoint.”

“It’s OK. I can take it.”

“Well, it all started with Ted my dog.”

“Oh yes, great dog. He’s a Cockerdoodle Poo isn’t he?”

“Close …, anyway, he was a bit of a pain as a puppy, barking all the time, chewing anything he could get his paws on, digging up the garden. He’s great now. Settled down really well. He even helps in the garden bringing me plant pots for potting up.”

“One of his favourite activities is to bury his bones in the garden. He has a good chew and then decides to bury it for later. A bit like we use a fridge. Unfortunately, he very rarely remembers where he’s buried it. This particular day, he must have been sure that he buried it where the pond is now. He started digging obsessively. He wouldn’t eat, wouldn’t sleep, kept wining to go out. The next day, he started again. We gave him a new bone but no, he wanted this one. In the end, I decided to line the now massive hole and fill it with water. That worked well except that he now swims in the pond, circling repetitively; I guess hoping to catch a glimpse of the bone in the watery depths.

He’s not doing it so much now. He’s taken a shine to the King Charles next door but one. This one’s a lady dog though so I guess it must be a Queen Charlotte, if there is such a breed. Ted clearly likes the thought of royalty in the family. I think he has aspirations to make a little prince/princess or ten. The other day, he found a crown, no doubt to impress his friend.”

“Great story” I said “I will keep quiet about the truth.”

It looks very impressive and inspiring. So inspiring that I got all my tools out of the shed and set to work on my own water feature. I didn’t want to copy my neighbours in any way and I don’t have masses of space and so I decided to install something a little humbler.

… Oliver Sudden  

Do you think this blog is partly True or not?

Hover over your guess, below.

9: True
9: False


L Swain
10/08/2022 at 21:22

Love the pictures of Ted!
Very funny blog, I’m enjoying hearing all Oliver Sudden’s escapades!

Brilliant water feature too! I imagine the school appreciated that!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.