Growing up in Ireland, choir lessons with one of the good Sisters of the local convent were an inevitability. Sr Rosarii had the dubious pleasure of teaching me and sixty other uniformed wee ones to chirp out a selection of hymns in English and in Gaelic for all manner of liturgical events.
"All things bright and beautiful!" we'd yodel enthusiastically.
"All creatures great and small!
All things bright and beautiful,
The Lord God made them all!"
Which I always felt was kind of unfair, because anteaters, blobfish and komodo dragons are neither bright nor beautiful (and, certainly in the case of the blobfish, you wouldn't want to be stuck next to them at a dinner party as far as scintillating conversation is concerned) but they never got a mention in any of the hymns we sang. But that's another post.
Anyway, the mental picture of Wee Gingerbread swaying in time to Sr Rosarii's baton unexpectedly popped into my head at 3:48 a.m. this morning.
Oh my goodness, you say. How did you know that it was 3:48 a.m precisely?
I'll tell you how, readers. Because I pulled a muscle in my back* and simply couldn't sleep. I tossed and turned (in a very careful fashion of course), listening to Mr G's nocturnal symphony. Drifting off to sleep, only to wake suddenly when I turned the wrong way. Fretful, horrible, half-sleep. I was exhausted. Too exhausted to sleep. Too exhausted to get up. I looked at my watch. Quarter past three.
Right, I thought, one concerted effort to relax. Switch off. Sleep. Sleep. Sleep.
I closed my eyes and ... finally ... dosed off ...
Wide awake, every muscle in my body tense.
Not really. Not seriously. Oh, puh-lease: I was being attacked by a flipping mosquito in the night of the first of November. I banged on the light - 3:48 a.m.
So yes, a vision of Little Me in her bottle-green school uniform briefly entered my head as I whacked the mosquito to Kingdom Come to meet his maker, the same one who made all the other things bright and beautiful, all those creatures great and small. Sorry, Almighty Being, but you can keep your mosquitos. If you really must, send me an anteater at 4 a.m. instead.
Edited to add:
Sensing a lack in the canon of hymns, I've penned another verse for the one above. Feel free to add it, if you wish:
All things strange and interesting,
Including blobfish and anteaters,
Komodos and pesky mosquitos,
Are also the Lord God's creatures.
You might have to play about with the melody, but I'm sure no one will notice.
* Yes, Mammy Gingerbread, arnica has been applied.