Thursday, January 22, 2009

Mouse memories

It's a new day. We're still recuperating from the cold, although I must admit that since we are non-smokers, this has gone by rather uneventfully. I am so grateful that a simple cold didn't turn into bronchitis the way it used to routinely. It feels good to have some stamina against a cold. We disagree in that Jerry said he misses smoking every day. I do not. I am thankful every day that I was able to get that monkey off my back. It's still snowing lightly as it has been since last night. We only acquired another half inch or so, but the weather report for the weekend is frigid again. I will be heading south with Allison for her weekend, and wonder if the temp on Long Island will be as cold. We'll see. We had some excitement yesterday as a mouse was spotted running along the perimeter of the living room. He was first spotted by Daphne, and then Jake and Bailey jumped up and saw him as well. It was a crowd of dogs trying to get behind the pellet stove, and the poor little mouse was running back and forth, first under the couch, then again behind the television. I did not jump up because it seemed like it was being handled. I'm not afraid of a mouse the way I am of a bat. I have dealt with mice before, and I am confident that I can handle them. One at a time that is. I am still skeeved by the movies Ben and Willard, and have no desire to take on an army of mice. That would be more than I can handle. But one mouse in the living room is not a problem for me. He finally ran back into the wall - a small 1/4" opening near the molding at the floor. Once I saw him go in, Jerry went and got the duct tape and closed off that access point. I'm assuming this will be a problem until the living room is finished. We won't be working on this room until the windows and the fireplace are completed. So we will be battling with Mickey for some time. Let the games begin. My mouse experience is vast. One of our chores when we were younger was sweeping the stairs off with a dustpan and brush when we opened the summer house in Connecticut. Inevitably you would find a mouse or two that didn't survive the winter in a house with no food or heat. So you brushed it in the pan and disposed of it in the trash. No biggie. It also allowed you the opportunity to really examine the mouse and see just how small they are. Hardly a threatening opponent, especially when it's dead. I was always glad I was not afraid of mice. It seemed such a silly fear when there were other more valid fears to deal with. Snakes and such. When I lived in Sea Cliff we were in an apartment that was somewhat built into a hill, and the brush behind the house was quite a hunting ground for our cat Izzie. He would deliver a small carcass to our front doormat every morning, proud of his conquest and looking for praise. It was just part of our daily routine. Once during the night I felt something on my shoulder and brushed it off, half asleep and not really registering what it was. The next morning Jackie saw a mouse in her room, and as soon as I heard her screaming "MOUSE!" I knew exactly what it was that had run across my shoulder in my sleep. I entered Jackie's room to find her standing on her bed in her pajamas and workboots, holding a tennis racket and a fishing rod. These are not the weapons that come to my mind when I think of what I might need to attack a mouse, but I think it was more of a panic situation and not really thought out. We went to the hardware store and purchased every mouse trap/killing device they had to offer, and we ultimately captured that fellow within just a few days. But thereafter I always slept with one eye open in Sea Cliff. Having survived a face-to-face mouse interaction, they don't hold too much fear for me anymore. He's here, we'll get rid of him, and that will be that. Hopefully, he is a loner. You would think with three dogs that mousetrap paraphanalia is not something we need to buy, but apparently barking and stalking is as involved as they are looking to get. Actually catching and biting is way too aggressive for this group of city-dogs. This is a winter mouse, and I'm sure we've been the source of his survival since the snow started in October, but I haven't seen too much evidence of him around the house. The under-house insulation really did close up alot of options for rodent entry. We have been virtually rodent-free since then. That is good news, but now I'm wondering where he's been. This will occupy my mind for some time. And I will be sleeping with one eye open once again.

1 comment:

Jackie said...

For the record, It was a fishing pole and a laundry basket... despite what you may think, I did have a plan. I was going to usher the mouse into the basket with the fishing pole. And they were WALTER'S workboots... just in case I got close enough to SMASH him!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (I didn't want to ruin mine) :)