I don’t know that I’ll ever learn the lesson fully, though I remind myself of it regularly – a series of lessons, actually.
Be self-reliant. If I cock it up, I’ll take the responsibility. But at least I probably won’t cock it up so comprehensively as some other people.
Never assume that someone will do what he says he will, when he says he will.
Someone who is genuinely trying to help may cause such a disastrous result that it would be far, far better if they’d never tried to in the first place.
If there is any possibility of someone trying to help, tell them first what not to do.
At present, I have a young hen in my porch, lying nearly unconscious and in a bad way. Too tedious to explain the details, but it’s a result of my gardener trying to help and putting her in a small run with eight others who don’t know her. The four young cocks have nearly pecked her to death. I never thought that anyone in their right mind would consider doing such a thing. She couldn’t get away.
I have thirteen other young birds in two pens waiting, because the friend who was going to pick them up didn’t turn up. He forgot. It was not easy to catch them and I’ve put the babies and their mum in one coop and another hen in the other, and I can’t let them go again. I can feed them but not give them water.
I have a splitting headache and am too distressed even to cry. Wince had no idea, he was only trying to help.
An hour later – I was able to contact Karen who’s having the birds and she came to pick them up. She’s trying to leave again, but Graham, who was going to take them to her, arrived too and is telling her about his difficult day, the reason he forgot to come.
The young hen is looking a little stronger. I don’t know if she will survive the night, but if she does then she has a decent chance. In that case, I’ll put a coop in my porch – yes, alongside the tortoises’ run – and keep her warm and dry.