Little Red Riding Hood or Grandmother


As soon as I saw these sheep, huddled together in a field, I realized that something was wrong. They looked distressed. Looking into the distance, I saw the reason why. Oh no! A dead sheep, and the owner and somebody else looking upset, searching for something. Tracks? Other evidence of the culprit?

Only DNA-testing can tell whether this sheep was killed by a wolf or a dog, but chances are that it was a wolf. We hear about sheep being killed by wolves around here on a weekly basis now.

For the people who lived here long before us, those who built the impressive megalithic burial monuments called hunebedden, wolves must have been a fact of life to be reckoned with.

But for us, in the 21st century it’s a phenomenon we’re not familiar with. There haven’t been any wolves here for at least 120 years. And now, all of a sudden the wolf is back! Arriving here from Eastern Europe via Germany, the wolf is supposed to eat roedeer, rabbits and other furry creatures. But it isn’t playing by the rules, because why waste energy chasing a meal that runs away fast when there is so much juicy mutton to be had with far less effort?

I’m talking of ‘it’ and ‘the wolf’, but it is uncertain how many there really are in this area. There is at least one, probably a couple, and maybe even a third. This newcomer is certainly causing a lively discussion. Some people are thrilled, while others are of the opinion that there is no place for wolves in this small, densely populated country.

I have mixed feelings. On the one hand I think, who are we to decide who or what is to live in this corner of the world? We are happy that the raven is back. We are happy that the otter is back. And we are happy that the badger is back. There are badger trails everywhere nowadays – zooming in, you should be able to see their paw prints.

Shouldn’t we be happy about the wolf being back as well?

On the other hand, when I hear of a wolf jogging past a playground full of playing children in broad daylight in the village where a friend of mine with school-going children lives, well, I don’t know…. How dangerous are they?

It is hard to imagine these otherwise peaceful surroundings being populated by packs of wolves in the future. Will guests of this Bed & Breakfast hear them howling at night in a few years’ time?

I’m fairly certain that the Highlands belonging to the B&B owners will be able to defend themselves with their fierce horns.

But how about me? I have no idea what to do if I were to come face-to-face with a wolf. Take photographs? Hide behind a tree? Call in my own personal superhero, ‘HELP! DO something, shoo it away!’?

Or strike up a conversation like Little Red Riding Hood?

Inside, I still feel like Little Red Riding Hood, but to all intents and purposes I’m becoming more like her grandmother by the day. In fact, I am becoming a grandmother this spring. And I may even need hearing aids before long.

Ménière’s disease is affecting my hearing. Although I’m still managing in everyday life, I can’t hear the little birds high up in the trees anymore. Fortunately I do not have the dizzy spells that go with it very often, but I’ve recently had one.

It wasn’t so bad this time that I’m in bed. And it’s never bad enough for me to be wearing a frilly cap.

It does mean that I need to take some rest and limit my screen time. So if you’ve posted a gorgeous FO on Ravelry or published a great blogpost and haven’t heard from me, please know that it isn’t because I’m not interested.

I’ve spent quite a bit of time quietly knitting, but had to rip out almost as much as I knit because my brain wasn’t functioning properly. Awooo! No, I wasn’t really howling like wolf. I thought, oh, well, we all have times like these and hope to show you some progress next week.

Stay safe! xxx

8 thoughts on “Little Red Riding Hood or Grandmother”

  1. Beterschap! Zo lastig en invalideerde de miniere!
    Wat ik wel zorgelijk vind aan de wolf is dat hij/zij zich wel grijpt aan een schaap en die zonder ervan te eten laat liggen. Ik hoop dat er een manier komt dat wel werkt de wolven op afstand van een kudde te houden!

    • Dank je! En ja, idd, als die wolf nou gewoon zo nu en dan een schaap helemaal zou opeten en verder niet, dan scheelde dat al een heel stuk. Maar ja, dat doet hij/doen ze niet. Ook bij het schaap op mijn foto was alleen de strot doorgebeten en er was verder geen hapje uit. En dit keer was het er maar eentje… Benieuwd hoe dit zich verder ontwikkelt.

  2. Marijke – sorry to hear that you have been diagnosed with Meniere’s disease. Glad to hear that the dizziness hasn’t been frequent, but no matter how often, it is never pleasant. I have only had one severe episode of dizziness in my lifetime, and that was enough. I can’t imagine having to deal with it more frequently.

    The return of the wolf – a menace, I would say.

    • Thank you, Kathie. No, dizziness certainly is never pleasant, but I am recovering an hope it’ll stay away for a while now.

  3. The wolves…hmmm. Yes, Nature knows best…I think. We don’t see many wolves near my house but we do have lots of coyotes. Only once have I had one approach me, and for all my shouting and jumping up and down, he ran away. We didn’t have neighbors at the time and that’s probably a good thing. I’m sure I looked like… well…you can imagine.

    The Meniere’s diagnosis…I’m sorry. That can’t have been pleasant news. As I understand, there are treatments for the vertigo but not for the hearing loss?

    • Coyotes, I don’t really know how they compare to wolves, but I think shouting and jumping up and down may be a good idea in both cases. The Meniere thing is not really news. I’ve had these spells of and on for almost twenty years, but they remain unpleasant. I can only be grateful that the dizziness is relatively mild and infrequent in my case.

  4. So sorry about your disease. I hope it continues to be relatively mild.

    When I was a child in the 70’s wolves were nearly extinct in Sweden. Now there are hundreds of them and the debate is intense. But historically they do not seem to be dangerous to people. There is no record in Sweden of any person being killed or injured by wolves in the wild. However, there was a tragic accident in a zoo a few years ago when a keeper was killed.

    • The first spell of dizziness I had was about twenty years ago. They haven’t got any worse so far, so I have good hopes that it’ll stay mild. Interesting to hear about wolves in Sweden. I thought they had always been there in larger numbers. It is a comfort to know that they do not seem to attack people.

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