It’s Wednesday again so time for a little update. How’s your week been? Mine? Well, I think you can probably guess… busy! Always busy. Even on those rare days when I think I’ll just hunker down for a day of pjs and TV something usually comes along and changes my plans. That is exactly what happened a week ago last Sunday when Gerrard came into my life.
Gerrard the pigeon began hanging around in our garden in the morning. Gradually he got closer and closer to the patio doors. I found it quite unusual to see a pigeon just sitting for hours so I went out to investigate a little further. I sat down next to him and he didn’t even flinch let alone fly away. What a little sweetheart. It was then that I wondered if he was injured. I took a closer look at one of his eyes, it seemed to be irritating him and he was scratching it with his sharp claws. By this time my son and daughter (back from uni for a flying visit) were sat with me and Gerrard. We all decided he seemed to be suffering and vulnerable seeing as he didn’t appear to be able to fly.
I began putting feelers out on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to find out what I ought to do to care for a poorly pigeon out of veterinary surgery hours on a Sunday. I first phoned the RSPCA and they gave me the number of a nearby on-call vet but when I called them they told me they couldn’t see any more patients as they already had too many emergencies. Next, I tried Wildlife Aid. If they sound familiar it may be because they were the subject of TV’s Wildlife SOS. They are seriously amazing.
Just as I had finally prepared a well-ventilated cardboard box for transporting little Gerrard, I walked toward him and he flew a few feet off the ground!! My jaw dropped! I had sat vigil next to him for about an hour and a half as I tried to find the best course of action to help him and here he goes flying through the hedge into the neighbour’s garden! When I say neighbour, this is a neighbour I have never met before as they are in a private road which sort of backs onto a part of my garden. At first I thought, “maybe he’s OK… perhaps I should leave him alone and his family may find him” but then I remembered how he had been hobbling a tiny bit, scratching his eye and making a gagging/retching action every now and again. No, he wouldn’t be safe without help.
Off I went, in my car, to find this road and try to work out which house shares my garden’s hedge! Found it! Luckily, people were at home. A lovely lady answered the door and I said, with empty box in hand, “this is going to sound pretty odd but my pigeon is in your garden and I need to get him to a vets. May I collect him, please?”. Being a peaceful Sunday afternoon seemed to make it feel all the more intrusive of me. The fact it was a private little road, too, but she was very kind.
I haven’t ever had to catch a bird before and wasn’t really sure what to do but I managed it after a couple of attempts. I thanked the lady of the house and made my way back to the car with a boxful of Gerrard. If you’re wondering how I knew the bird was a ‘he’ and, furthermore, a ‘Gerrard’ the answer is I didn’t. When my children and I were sat with him I asked what we should call ‘it’ that could be a unisex name. My Chrissie said “Gerrard”. This amused me and so ‘it’ became ‘he’ and, ultimately ‘he’ became ‘Gerrard’.
After about half an hour in the car with Gerrard we arrived at Wildlife Aid. When I turned off the car everything was silent. “Gerrard..?”. Nothing. A peek into the box. No movement. I was so sad in case he hadn’t survived the journey.
I carried the box into the reception area where I was warmly greeted by a lady who had me explain the situation and then we both looked into the box. Yes! Gerrard was still with us! It was time for me to say goodbye to my new friend as he went off to the wildlife hospital.
The next day I phoned to check on Gerrard’s progress. Sadly, I was told that he had canker, which is a fungal infection that can be treated but only if caught early. It was too late for him and they had to put him to sleep. Even typing this is making me well up. A little embarrassing as I’m sat in a public cafe typing this. The kind person on the phone said I had saved him from a prolonged and horrible death by rescuing him. It may sound silly to some but I cried. Yes, over a pigeon. A living, feeling, suffering being in any guise will always touch the very heart of me.
Gerrard was only in my life a few hours but I almost felt like he had some sort of sense or knowing that he would be helped if he came to us. Again, it may sound daft but there are some things we just don’t know. I like to think he chose us to help.
I never did find out if Gerrard was male or female. I did ask, out of curiosity, and the woman on the phone said it was hard to tell and they weren’t sure. Whatever your gender, little friend, I’m so glad we could help you and that you’re no longer suffering. Rest in peace, Gerrard Huntley.
OK, time to compose myself enough to tell you that we are launching a Perricone Today’s Special Value at midnight tonight. I can’t reveal too much except to say that Perricone TSVs are always biggies! It’s a very scientifically advanced range devised by Dr Nick Perricone and a favourite of many of the top A list, red carpet glitterati. For many, the prices are a little out of reach but, with QVC and our tremendous buying power, we are able to bring unbeatable deals. People often stock up when the TSVs come along. I hope you can tune in at midnight when I’ll be joined by Karra Beck.
Looking ahead to Friday, one of my week’s highlights is presenting The Poppy Collection on QVC’s Style Channel live at 5pm. Not only is Kate Green a wonderful ambassador and employee of The Royal British Legion but she and her wife, Michelle, are becoming great friends of mine.
She shares the same sense of humour as I do. She is also extremely informative when explaining where all the money raised for The Legion goes. Please have a look back through my blogs to see more about Kate. You can browse this year’s collection here. Please do join us Friday as we’d love your support. You make a huge difference in not only remembering the fallen but helping the living. Thank you so much.
Have a great week and thanks again for reading.
Love Catherine xx