A lastminute.com microadventure that didn’t take any planning was just what I needed.

I found myself watching TV on a Friday night much longer than I normally do on a Friday night.  I didn’t really want to go outside.  My sleeping bag, kindle, phone, headphones and water bottle were sitting by the patio doors, ready for adventure.

As we were locking up for the night, the local urban fox made a trot-by of the front of the house.  And there it was, in all it’s russet glory, the personification of my fears about sleeping outside!

OK – so my fears might not necessarily have been that the fox would jump over the lazy dog (otherwise known as the gate); rather, I was convinced that one of the neighbour’s cats would jump down off the fence and onto me as I lay on the garden sofa.  Startled from a deep and sleep, I would leap up, strangled by my sleeping bag I’d fall through the table, smashing out my two fake front teeth.  I’d lie in a pool of my own blood until someone came looking for the cat that was sitting triumphantly on me!

These cats and I have a thing going on.  They do obscene things in the garden and whilst I like cats, I detest them for that.  Then they sit on the fence and mock me!

I know that sleeping on a garden sofa under a  pergola roof  ( I now know where the proverbial dog house is) isn’t exactly bivvying in the wilds of Dartmoor.  It is the behaviour becoming of a Waitrose shopper, but I think it was nearly as scary (as sleeping wild, not shopping in Waitrose!)

The Dog House!

The Dog House!

My senses were on high alert as I settled myself on my bed for the night.  I couldn’t close my eyes so I read the Kindle (seriously, John Lewis and Waitrose have a lot to answer for!)  I read for ages.  I didn’t want to sleep.  I heard the neighbours lock up for the night.  House lights switched off.  The plastic guttering clicking as it cooled.  I heard it all. High alert. Listening for the scrabble of a cat up the fence!

I eventually I let it go.  I dozed for a few hours.

At 4 am I woke.  The nearly full moon (and a neighbour who will not turn off a security light) allowed me to look out for those sneaky reflective cat eyes. It is surprising what you can see when you eyes are adjusted but the cats were tucked up safely in bed.

The fear had gone and I just turned over and went back to sleep.  I didn’t wake until nearly 8am!

The view

The view – note the stick in case I met that cat!

My cosy bed for the night!

My cosy bed for the night!

As part of the microadventure, I decided to cook breakfast on the Aquaforno on the deck.  I really was roughing it – although the pancakes were pre-made; probably bought in Waitrose and I didn’t have to share them with the cats (or the fox!)

Posh pancakes

Posh pancakes


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