I always enjoyed watching my neighbours' kids playing football on the open space in front of my house. Most of the kids are of primary school age.
Two evenings ago they were playing football as usual. Suddenly the boys were missing. My guest was right. Their football had gone over the slope towards the flood mitigation pond neighbouring the open space.
Had the ball not being kicked hard it would just roll down and stopped at the 'buffer zone' between the slope and the pond itself. This happened many time before. But the way some of the boys were shouting from the top of the slope I knew something was wrong. Their ball must had been kicked to the pond itself.
My only fear was for some of the boys to jump into the pool to retrieve their ball. I quickly joined their crowd. Yes, their ball was floating right in the centre of the pool. Some of them were throwing stones and sticks in the hope that the ball would be hit and would float to the other side.
One boy threw a dead tree branch. This made matters worse as the ball was trapped by the branch's twigs. The branch itself was not floating at all. I guessed it was stuck in mud.
Drops of rain were beginning to fall, so I told the boys to go home.
The next morning, that was yesterday, I looked into the pond and saw the ball was still trapped by the dead tree branch. The rain did not move the branch and ball any further. Suddenly I realised that the boy who threw the branch was not dumb after all.
I went home and took out my adjustable aluminium pole which I bought a few years ago from the supermarket. Even after being stretched to the maximum length it still could not reach the branch. So I tied the pole to a wire which I kept handy. I bent the wire end to form a hook.
I went down the pond's edge and threw the wire like a man throwing a fishing line.
After a few throws the hook managed to catch the branch. I only had to pull the branch towards me and the ball came with it. Kids' stuff.
My only problem now is to look after the ball's owner.