Harry the Hairy Mouse update
South Manchester Helen O'Grady

We have now realised that Harry the Hairy Mouse has a middle name of Homer following a recent revelation that he may have returned to the scenery store. In a review of SMHOG security, Jane and Ruth confidently hid in a coffee bar 1/2 a mile away from the store wearing suitable protective clothing, whilst I braved the dangerous duty of checking whether this hardy rodent had returned. The difficulty I have is that I am no expert. Everything seemed normal but I did find a small nest like structure made up of leaves and twigs – oh and some random bits of fluff and feathers. However, on interrogation of the brave ladies, it is possible that it was there on the first rodent sighting as there was no in depth investigation of the darker recesses of the store following Harry Homer’s discovery and daring attempted escape. Thank goodness Oscar the Dog was there to prevent his escape but too naive to actually realise what Harry Homer was, so the break for freedom was nipped in the bud by “Doggy Default” possibly saving the lives of Jane and Ruth, who you may remember had accidentally barricaded themselves in Harry’s domain. Anyway, everything was nice and tidy otherwise.

IMG_0670As you may be aware, Harry Homer was humanely captured and released into an area of Urmston Meadows where Oscar and I have seen other similar rodents at play. I consider that, if he hasn’t returned to the store, which would be the equivalent in mousey terms of a human walking from Land’s End to John O’Groats, then he is likely to be having a whale of a time partying to all hours and generally enjoying himself with his new found mates. In another turn up as we visited the site of the release, last night we found that a small fox appeared to have gatecrashed the venue which caused Oscar the Dog to have another naive moment. Let me explain.

We strolled nonchalantly together along a certain path where the release took place in the hope that we might see Harry Homer. Oscar was busy sniffing those smells that dogs find so wonderful and interesting. No more than 30 metres away a small fox only slightly bigger than a cat exited the bushes and looked at me. At this point Oscar the Dog was preoccupied with a large stick he had found which was very important to him. The fox turned and walked away from us but in the same direction we were heading. It took a couple of seconds for Oscar the Dog to realise, at which the stick became considerably less interesting than the fox in the distance. A chase ensued.

Drama Everywhere

Oscar the Dog working out his next move

Oscar the Dog working out his next move

Foxes are surprisingly quick when challenged as Oscar was off like a rocket and gaining rapidly. In the distance I saw the fox, with about 10 metres to spare, disappear into a bush shortly followed by our Oscar. Remarkably, almost as soon as Oscar entered the Bush, the fox exited at a slightly different place almost like one of those movies where the target is trying to avoid the surveillance team. The fox looked at me disdainfully and then looked around in the direction of Oscar who, admittedly, could be heard crashing and careering unseen through the undergrowth. Anyway, Foxy trotted off at an almost perfect 90 degree angle to his original travel occasionally glancing back towards Oscar’s direction. Clearly, the fox had decided I was no threat anymore!!

vectorized_foxFoxy trotted to about 50 metres when Oscar broke cover and headed directly after Foxy again. He cleared 10 of the 50 metres before Foxy realised and took off. Did I mention how quick foxes are when they put their mind to it? Foxy headed for a different patch of undergrowth closely followed by Oscar who ran headlong into the hole created by Foxy. Once more, the millisecond Oscar disappeared, Foxy reappeared from a slightly different part of the scrubbery. He trotted off at an angle of 90 degrees to the original course of travel which now meant he was travelling in the opposite direction to me some 60 metres to my right. I swear that if he could speak he would have castigated me on my attempt to catch him with a rank novice whilst he disappeared confidently into the distance.

Oscar was and still is perplexed. What drama could possibly surpass the homing mouse and daring fox escape? The only thing I could think of is the famous SMHOG end of year show which promises to be a fantastic event where the SMHOG students can show off their own drama talents and drama skills learnt throughout the year. This year we will be at Our Lady’s and English Martyr’s Church Hall in Urmston (near the Nags Head Roundabout if you know it) which is a smaller venue than the school we were at last year.  Our teachers are working hard with their classes whilst loads is going on behind the scenes to get everything ready for the show.

Tickets are on sale now and are limited in the first instance to two per family. After the 19 June 2015 then any tickets left will go on open sale. Please get your tickets ordered because there is a limit to the venue. Even so we hope that you will come and support the children at their performance.

Calling New Students

Has this story interested you? Unfortunately as we are very close to show time then we cannot recruit this term. However, you could come for the last week of term to a free trial lesson to see what our acting classes and drama classes are all about. That way you would be able to enrol for September and begin the SMHOG Academic term following our curriculum based programme of learning. Even if you are unsure, just give us a ring at the office and have a chat on 0161 749 8746 or 07595 188484. If we are out at class or just finding some costume or scenery, leave a message and we will call you back.

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