Nov 5 2012 By Natasha Gorbert-Hopkins
I stood on the bank, peering into the canal.
"What the ...?" I repeated. It was large definitely not a cat.
A fox? A badger? I couldn't tell. It was caught in between my boat and the bank, unable to climb up the sheer concrete, unable to turn around. What could I do?
I didn't want to try picking it up with my bare arms and could I even lift it anyway? I stood, frozen, staring at the dark shape in the water. It wasn't moving any more. Was I too late?
I walked closer. I still couldn't make out what it was, but I was sure it was no longer alive. Guilt gripped me. I stood there for a little longer, then decided there was nothing to be done in the dead of night. I gave the poor creature one last glance and went back to bed.
In the morning, I went to investigate. It was not a fox, or a badger, or even a really large cat. It was a deer.
A small Muntjac deer, to be precise (see below). I had no idea there were any deer around Cowley, so to find one had ended its life just beside my head was a bit surprising to say the least.
My mum walked over. "Well, it can't stay there", she said bluntly.
So,one fine Saturday morning, I untied the ropes of my boat and let it drift out a little way, before using a barge pole to push a dead deer out into the canal.
Only on a narrowboat...