If my calculations are correct, it’s been a good two weeks since we’ve caught a mouse, but I’m aging and memories fade. Sometimes there’s too much wine, too, because I must have a way to get these critters off my mind. Every morning, I scan the bedroom before I get out of bed, and walking down the hall to the kitchen, I peek into each room. I avoid the TV area where hubby has placed the traps. I don’t need to see one squirming in the glue. I don’t need to remember how he took the broom and bopped them on the head before tossing them into the compost bin. However, he finally gave up on the broom and tossed them in the green bin alive—which is the gist of this story. (And YES! I know they shouldn’t be tossed into the green bin. He won’t be doing that again, either.)
Yesterday, I was out most of the day. When I got home, I left the car in the driveway instead of pulling into the garage and passed by the compost bin on the way into the house.
And stopped—a full stop.
What the heck was that on the pavement? I knew what it looked like, but it couldn’t be.
But it was.
I raced into the house, glad to be safe indoors. Or was I? I’ve been looking over my shoulders for weeks. Who knows where they lurk: behind a drape, behind a closed door, behind an open door? Under my desk, where I spend most of my day?
I went about the rest of my afternoon until Hubby returned home.
“Did you see that thing?”
“No, what thing?”
“The mouse trap.”
“What mouse trap?”
“You walked right by it. The plastic thingie.”
“No, I didn’t see it. And what plastic thing do you mean? One of the traps?”
“Not the heavy plastic trap, the stickie trap. The disposable ones. There’s one on the pavement. How could you miss it?”
“I didn’t see anything.”
Hubby never sees anything!
I run to the back door. “There.”
I open the door and point again. It’s about four feet away. “Oh, maybe it’s upside down. Maybe the mouse is underneath it. But how did it get there? I thought you were throwing them in the bin?”
Hubby goes outside to check.
“Ew!” I close the door and go back to dinner prep.
He says nothing when he comes in, secretive as always.
“What was it?”
“Oh, the trap.”
“Yes, the trap.” I’m exasperated.
“I think something got into the compost bin and ate it. There was nothing left.”
“Gross,” I say. “So now we have critters in the compost bin.”
The thing is, the bin was intact. The lid was down, and the bin isn’t shoved against the house. We’ve had raccoons in the bin several times, but evidence always remained: lid up, a mess on the driveway, the bin on its side.
No, it was the mice: the intelligent, huge mice that fed on our nuts and chocolates for over three months. They’re smarter than the regular, average small mouse. Even stuck to glue, they’re strong and smart, able to vault to the underside of the lid, whack it open, and leap to the pavement. Yep, I’m sure of it.
I made stew a couple of days ago and left the crock pot on the counter instead of putting it back in the lower cupboard. Tonight, I open the cupboard to put it away.
What!!!! Little black specks! Mouse droppings? I have to know for sure, so I touch one. Hubby won’t be home for another hour.
(I accidently touched a mouse turd eons ago, when I was younger, when I lived in the country, so I knew what they looked and felt like.)
These are flakes. Don’t appear to be turds. Still, I’m not one hundred percent positive, so I leave the cupboard door open until Hubby arrives home.
“Doesn’t look like mice,” he says, when he gets home.
“Touch one and see.”
He touches one. “Nope, don’t think it’s from mice.”
“Then what is it? It wasn’t there two days ago.”
“You would know,” he says.
I think he’s being sarcastic, but it turns out he’s serious and he’s complimenting me (a bit). He knows I see everything.
I rip off a wad of paper towel, wet it, and scoop up the “turds.”
“There’s no way mice could get in that cupboard,” he says.
The coffee pot is in that cupboard. Had I left grinds in the pot? Not like me to do that. Plus, I’m positive the bits weren’t there earlier.
To recap: we’ve caught seven thus far. As I said, it’s been over two weeks, so I think that’s it.
That’s it—until the next time!