Peggoty’s garden pond is something special. Water streams from a giant pearly shell into the crystalline deep. Fairy fronds of bright green weed trail artistically across the water’s calm and alluring surface. Silvery shafts of sunlight bounce off the surrounding stones and dapple the dewy grass. It is a pond any frog would be proud to call home. Indeed, were a frog to be kissed by a Princess who then offered a spawning space in her palace or penthouse, a wise frog would spurn the suggestion and opt to stay with Peggoty. Of course, there are frogs in her pond.
There are also frogs in our pond where a muddied length of plastic tubing drips dismally into stagnant water silted up with old leaves, grass cuttings and broken bits of plastic bucket (the only evidence we did once try to clean it out). Weeds creep across our uneven pavers. We are not strangers to slime. Our frogs are favela frogs, living among rubbish, and starved of beauty and opportunity. If they are princes, they have a really poor deal. This is truly a Grimm existence and young lovelies passing our pond are more likely to wince, flinch or retreat than to pucker up. Luckily frogs are famously upwardly mobile–maybe they can one day make the leap to a better amphibian address?