Ever seen the movie Born Free?
Well we have slowly been making our way through Lovefilm's entire collection of tear-jerky, true animal movies just lately. Fly away home. The adventures of Greyfriars Bobby. That kind of thing. And then Born Free/ Living Free ( The sequel to BF ) dropped onto our doormat the other day. I vaguely remembered from my childhood that it was a story about Elsa the lion, and it had an epic theme tune. That was about it.
So we sat down for a double bill and made an afternoon of it.
Oh my good God. I have realised that I am the embodiment of Joy Adamson in home educating form. I was laughing my head off throughout the film seeing the parallels between us both.
There she is with these cute cubs, going (sad face) "Oh pleeaaase George (Pete) can't we keep them? They are just sooo ADORABLE!"
And she gets her own way and so the mayhem begins! Except in my case, it turns out my cubs are actually human children. Four of them. All boys.
It all starts quite gently and having lions in your home seems like a do-able option. At first the little critters are simply knocking drinks over, or climbing on the furniture.... That kind of thing.But in no time at at they are bigger, and start gnashing things, giving visitors the evil eye and defecating in inappropriate places. Sounds familiar! Then comes the full- blown zoo-at-home, when the wee darlings are getting not just Big for their pussy-cat boots, but completely taking over the gaffe and acting like the Rolling Stones at Villa Nellcote.
And when Joy finally, after patiently enduring the destruction of her house, says something like "Oh George, why don't we move them out of the house?" I find myself thinking "Dammit that woman is a GENIUS!".
George sets to work building a new door frame complete with heavy-duty lion-proof mesh to keep the feline hooligans out. I am mentally taking notes.
And good old Joy resists sending them to the zoo at every turn. Everyone tells her she is nuts. That these lions belong in a zoo, not in the wild. Is she crazy? Hell yeah!
And then comes all the trialling and erroring of getting them to successfully mate, and not get shot, or eaten by other baddie lions, and not die in the wilderness when released. The worry and stress of it all!!!
I have all that ahead of me. But for now, I am measuring up the door frames and eyeing up the garden, wondering if they could fend for themselves .... Pete thinks they are definitely old enough, but I dunno.... Alf is only 2..... But I am tempted.....