Friday, April 10, 2009

eek a mouse

I have been following Steven's posts about animal experiments and it makes me wonder about how they relate to what's been happening in our apartment, off and on, the past few months. We've had a mouse.

One evening as I was sitting at the computer I caught some movement out of the corner of my eye. A day or so later I saw the evidence of our visitor in our pantry. The Fig Newtons had been breached and nibbled on. I cleaned up the mouse poop and the building maintenance came and patched up a hole. No more mouse. Or so we thought.

A few weeks ago I was standing by the sink and I heard the distinct sound of crunching, sort of like what it sounds like when a person is eating a chip or a cracker. Except I wasn't eating. The next morning I asked the building to check on it, but they claimed they saw no sign of a mouse. A few days later, the same sort of thing happened again, and I asked them to check. No mouse. I heard crunch-like noises again a few hours later and ran downstairs. I wasn't going crazy, the little guy was up there, practically mocking me. They came up again, and with me looking over their shoulders, managed to find a few new holes behind the stove. This time they sealed the new holes, put down poison and a glue trap. I had been trying to avoid that more deadly approach, but having a kid makes you cave on certain things...

A few days later there was mouse poop on the kitchen counter. OK, this isn't Tom and Jerry anymore. He's taking it up a notch. I cleaned it up and also laid down a house-mouse-martial-law. While my housekeeping is somewhat lax - I pick up the big chunks and always straighten up, but I never mop or vacuum. I hate doing it, always have. I have Maid Pro come in every two weeks to do that sort of stuff. (Why I waited until having a kid to do this, I don't know. It's so worth the extra bucks to pay a little bit extra and avoid housework. I only wish I had figured this out years ago. Anyway...) But with a mouse in the house who has probably been sealed in with us now, we have to clean up our act, and I have to remove his food source. So no more spilled Cheerios left on the floor. Before we leave the house in the morning we clean up every crumb, a la the Grinch. Luckily, the kid actually enjoys doing this.

We'll see how it goes. So far there's been no recurrence of poop on the counter. As much as I don't want to deal with our little visitor, I secretly hope that he has found a hole into greener apartment pastures, rather than think of him starving or poisoned or stuck to a trap. Of course none of this would have happened if our cat still lived with us. But that's another story, for another time.


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