I spent last night paddling in fog shrouded backwaters narrowly avoiding crocodiles, snakes, rapids and creepy crawlies, deep in Africa's Heart of Darkness. Sadly it was only in my mind. As an avid reader of travel literature, I've been hooked by 'Facing the Congo', a brilliant account of paddling the Congo River in a hand built canoe.
My evening of sofa exploration had me curled up and shivering as fist sized beetles, electric catfish and whistling cockroaches the size of a baby's foot, coloured my imagination. ( Well I have actually stroked a cockroach that whistled, but that's a story for another time.)
On finishing a really squirmy passage where the author camps in the underbush full of snakes, ferocious bees, black flies that leave bleeding holes in exposed flesh and every other kind of predatory insect imaginable, I jumped up to make a cup of tea and gave the most almighty scream.
A scary beast was creeping towards me. Don't ask me why but somehow, after breaching two closed doors and a sleeping cat, a newt was heading purposefully across the carpet, heading towards the Turkish rug. Where the tiny creature came from is a complete mystery. There isn't even a pond in my garden and why it chose to brave the kitchen floor and start a journey across an expanse of carpet instead of a cosy night on the damp lawn is a real puzzle.
It can't have been brought in by the cat as he's not that gentle, and this little creature was completely unharmed. It's more than welcome. I'm wildlife friendly, but I want more warning next time. It took ten minutes before my heart stopped racing and I could repatriate it back to the garden.