Monday, April 18, 2011

Houdini - the mouse in the house

We have a mouse in the house and he has plenty of places to hide. We've named him Houdini.  We live in a century old house with four fireplaces to climb, attic rafters and floors made of heart pine, and compact beadboard closets with shelves climbing twelve feet in the air.  And before you think we live in a wonderful old plantation house, we don't.  It's one of those houses that was a flip of a coin when we moved here sixteen years ago.  Should we tear it down and start over or should we put our life savings in it and restore it?  We settled for somewhere in between.

It's a pretty solid and airtight old house with insulation enough to insulate the White House so I'm not sure how this mouse got in.  We've had only a half dozen or so mice since we moved in and the cats quickly took care of them.  Cello, our current cat is fat and lazy and not earning his keep.  He's an outside cat who only comes in to eat.  He may cuddle up and sleep on our bed for an hour or so but goes right back out, never stopping to smell the roses mice.  I did pull back the sofa and threw him behind it once, but he just found an old marble and started rolling it around.

I first noticed this mouse about a week ago.  We were in the living room watching TV and he ran out from under the sofa into the fireplace.  Too bad we don't have remote control gas logs or he would have been toast.  The next day I bought two kinds of traps.  I thought I would give him a chance with a glue trap.  I imagined the whole scenario.  I would wake up the next morning to a little mouse glued tight to the trap, I would take trap and mouse outside and release him into the woods.  Henry laughed.  "What?" I said.  He said he was just amused at the thought of me picking up a live mouse when I scream every time I see one. "I can do it", I said, glaring at him and muttering under my breath, "Buddyroe, you're the one that's going to do it.  You just don't know it yet."

The next morning I ran to look at the trap before I made my first cup of coffee.  It was gone.  I found it five minutes later under Henry's recliner with a big gob of fur stuck to it.  Oh great!  Now I have a bald mouse running around my house.  That night I was working late at my computer and heard a noise.  I glanced up just in time to see something scamper across the hallway floor. It was too dark to see if it was bald.  It was time for the big guns.  I proceeded to set two old fashioned spring loaded mouse traps and put peanut butter as bait.  Sorry, Mr. Mouse, you didn't allow me to be humane.

The next morning, with much less enthusiasm, I went to see what gory sight awaited me. Both traps licked clean - no peanut butter - no mouse - still spring loaded.  The next three nights I set the traps a little more loosely.  So loose, in fact that I scared myself to death by tripping one as I carried it to the living room. Same scenario each morning -licked clean and not a trace of a mouse.  I could swear I heard the mouse laughing in the background. A friend on Facebook told me that mice go to seminars for that kind of thing. I'm beginning to think she's right. I'm making a trip to the Feed and Seed store today.  I'm planning to cut back on his allowance.

1 comment:

  1. We had a tearoom (in another lifetime) and once a found a nest of them behind the old boiler. I locked my cat in with them night ... she was brilliant, but I'm sure Health and Safety wouldn't have approved!

    P.S. The glue boards are useless!


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