double trouble

Yesterday was an odd day. First off it was unusually hot around here. One could say we are having a little heatwave. Secondly our giant kitty friend caught two mice and brought them home. This is rather odd since we have lived here for seven years and have never seen a single mouse. I’m very reluctant to move somewhere new because I fear mice and ghosts. I love to visit the blog Design Sponge, the Sneek Peek section is my favorite. They feature regular people with great style and peek into their homes. For each Sneek Peek they ask the home owner to share what they love the most about their house. I often wonder what I would say about ours. Would I give credit to the giant trees on the street, my sunny “Arttic” studio upstairs, the lime green kitchen nook? Probably not, because what I really love the most about our house is that there aren’t any mice and I’ve never seen a ghost. We are quite lucky considering our house is old and the former owner Virgina died in one of the bedrooms. Yesterday Jon walked into the office and quietly said “Not sure how you are going to feel about this, but kitty just walked up to the back door with a mouse in her mouth” my response was “Why would you tell me that?” Jon answered “I thought you would want to know. I said “No, not at all!” Instantly my heart started to race. I imagined the tail hanging out of kitty’s mouth and I wanted to gag.

My mind wandered back to 1984, my family is unloading stuff into the shingle sided cabin that my Dad built on Pirates Cove. It’s spring and our first family trip of the year. We quickly discover that the mice have invaded over the winter, making nests under the beds upstairs. This discovery puts my mom on edge, sensing her anxiety my sister and I become uptight. We are gathered around the fireplace that my Dad built out of river rock. He hauled each smooth gray rock up from the river bed to his truck, placing each rock methodically in place to create a hearth. He built every inch of this cabin, with it’s unfinished plywood walls and wires hanging out every which way. From the outdoor solar “shower” with the spiders and the slugs to the giant octagon window upstairs. My dad is relaxing by the fire, sipping a drink and enjoying having all his girls out at the cabin. But we are quiet staring at a tiny hole in the river rocks behind the stove. The fire is crackling and my Dad is trying to make small talk. We keep our eyes peeled and are on the defense. Just as expected a mouse runs out of the hole and straight for us. All hell breaks loose. It’s past midnight and we are at least a hour and half from home. My mom is yelling, my Dad yells back, doors slam and before I know it I am in the backseat of our wood panel station wagon in my pajamas. My Dad is outside backlit by the kitchen light, framed perfectly under the asymmetrical roof line. He refuses to leave the cabin because of a mouse on Memorial Day weekend. As we back out into the darkness my Mom says “Well then, have a great holiday with the mouse” and we leave my Dad in our dust.

After that first mouse memory I have never been able to keep myself calm around rodents. After Jon informed me of our kitty and the mouse I tried to block it out. When I heard a tiny squeaking sound in the kitchen and kitty meowing I figured I was a paranoid nutcase. Jon came into the office again and calmly said ” I think you are going to want to go outside right now” and I instantly screamed “OH MY GOD, ANOTHER ONE! IS IT IN THE HOUSE?!!!” Jon replied, “Just sneak out the back”  I yelled “I CAN’T! LOCK ME IN HERE, CLOSE THE DOOR NOW, LOCK ME IN!!!” Seeing he was getting nowhere, Jon shut the door as I jumped up on the couch and screamed. I saw the crack under the door and knew it was coming for me. Luckily Jon had left a towel on a chair earlier, I ran over and stuffed it in the crack. I went to the computer and blasted my dance mix. A few minutes later I could faintly hear Jon yelling for me over Rihanna. I turned it down, through the closed door we yelled back and forth. Jon said “I need you to get me a broom and a box”. I replied “No, I can’t, I can’t move, I can’t leave this room you have to get the broom yourself”. Jon repeated ” I need you to get me a broom, if I do it I will lose sight of it”  I answered between heavy breaths ” I CAN’T, I CAN’T, I CAN’T!”. Jon’s patience was beginning to wear thin. “Seriously just grab the broom now!” I took one last deep breath and held it in, put my hand on the glass doorknob and tried to open it quickly but it was stuck from the earlier slam. I wiggled it loose while losing my confidence and ran to the kitchen with my eyes closed. I grabbed the broom and tossed it to Jon. Then I went back for a piece of Tupperware for the trap. “WHY CAN’T I EVER FIND A MATCHING LID?!!!” I spotted a left over soup container and tossed it to Jon and raced straight out the back door. It seemed to me that Jon wrangled with the mouse in the house for at least 14 hours, but I think it was more likely 8 minutes. Jon (my hero) came out to inform me that it was safe to return inside. For now the cat door is shut and sealed tight until future notice. So much for loving our house because I have never seen a mouse. Guess I’ll have to fall back to the leaded glass windows and refinished wood floors. Virgina better not make an appearance tonight.

A collection of favorite kitty i-phone shots. It’s our two year anniversary of meeting our furry friend. Kitty arrived during a heatwave, jumped in our window and adopted us. But that’s a whole other story…..