We are slightly shattered this morning as we were woken just before five am by daughter, who in turn had been woken by the new blight on our family's lives, ie seagulls. Yes, seagulls. In a city at least 50 miles from the sea. A huge flock of them seems to have nested on our roof, and most if its members (are you a "member" of a flock?) now greets every dawn with a screeching noise like a monster from Dr Who. The noise somehow travels down the chimneys, which course sends dear daughter into a terrified panic which can be settled only with repeated viewing of Peppa Pig. I was livid by 8 am, and told my wife I was going up on the roof to sort them out.
"Don't be ridiculous," she said. "They'll just fly away, and you'll probably fall through."
I ignored this possible reference to my weight. "We've got to do take action," I said. "I'll just go and chuck stones at them or something."
"You can't do that either," she replied. "Seagulls are a protected species. I looked it up on the internet."
I was speechless. Why the hell do we need to protect seagulls? There are millions of them! (Is everything endangered? Maybe it is, I always glaze over when that sort of thing comes on the television, very bad of me I know, but I do).
So there we have it. Another Government strike against the people; rights for seagulls. We can only wait in the hope that one day they will go back to the seaside where they belong, and we can sleep past five am. I might just let them have the house, and we'll just go and live on a cliff an have done with it.