I had vague thoughts about writing a post for today about the end of fall.
Then I opened my pantry and discovered mouse droppings. This chased any change-of-season thoughts right out of my head. Now that we've joined the hordes of people with mouse problems (and by hordes I mean my sister and a friend of mine), I feel compelled to write about these little unwanted guests (lucky you).
So far, I have yet to encounter a live mouse this year. I've only seen evidence of their presence (the droppings, the corner of a hot cocoa packet gnawed through- and I swear that wasn't me). I consider myself fortunate in this way, because two years ago the situation was very different.
Derek and I had begun to notice a foul odor about our house, especially downstairs. We couldn't pinpoint the source of the smell, but it seemed to come from the area right around the fridge and pantry. I scrubbed out the fridge, then decided that must have been the culprit; the smell seemed to be gone. Two days later, the stench was worse than ever, but I had already cleaned out the fridge and emptied most of the pantry. Finally, I moved a sack of potatoes on the bottom shelf in the pantry, and there it was: A dead mouse. But not just any dead mouse, oh no. By some amazing and unfortunate coincidence, the corn syrup had tipped onto it's side, leaked out, and onto the deceased mouse. So I couldn't just take 50 or so grocery sacks, pick it up, and throw it away that way; I instead had to scrape and chisel that thing off the laminate floor. Normally I just save the disgusting chores for Derek, but I couldn't live with the thought of that thing decomposing all day while he was at work. It took forever, and the whole experience was exacerbated by the fact that I was pregnant with Caedmon, so my gag reflex was extra-sensitive.
Three-year-old Adelaide had to weigh in with her opinion on the matter. As I was scraping and retching in the pantry, she voiced concerns over the poor dead mouse; after all, the mice on Cinderella were nice. I informed my daughter that animated creatures that hand-make (paw-make?) clothing for you = good, while sticky, disease-infested rodents= bad, and I had yet to find any new dresses in my wardrobe.
We had one other mouse that winter, caught in a trap, and since then haven't had any problems- until yesterday. Still, as long as I don't find anything dead coated in sugar, I'm not going to worry.
Now who wants to eat at our house for Thanksgiving?