Monday, January 23, 2006
There was a pong in the pantry, a nasty niff in the larder. It had been there for a few days. I suspected that it might be something dead and rotting in a hidden corner and thought it might be a mouse. There was evidence of mouse activity (mouse poo). I knew I had to do something about it but I just didn't relish the thought of coming across a dead mouse or a live one for that matter or, heaven forbid, a nest of the critters. I tried to ignore it and hoped it would go away but it didn't the stench just got worse. Paul was having a go at me (like he does) about all the empty containers in there, you know the lovely collectable ones with writing on. He doesn't understand why I have them when they are all empty. He doesn't get it, so every time I asked him to help me clear out the pantry he said 'yes we'll get a big bin and throw out all those useless tins'. Well that's the kind of help I don't want. He's just fed up with them 'cos once he tried to cook and couldn't find any flour. After trying all the tins that said flour on them and not finding it he rang me on my mobile to ask. It's in the jar that says flour in the kitchen of course, in between the empty flour tin and the empty sugar container. God, he only had to ask!! So realising that I was going to get no help from him I started to clear out by taking all the things off of the floor and dragging them into the kitchen, discovering little piles of mouse shit as I did so. I felt very on edge as I did this. Once the floor was cleared and no evidence of the cause of the smell found I decided to clear the shelves. I started to move boxes and tins and picked up a pile of empty egg trays. A mouse jumped out. I screamed. I mean really screamed, very high pitched and very loud. I didn't know I could do that! Jeez the thing scared me half to death. I went into the kitchen feeling all shook up and thought 'I can't do it'. I had to, no one else was going to, so back I went, slowly and very nervously removing things from the shelves. Then I saw him. On the top shelf peering down at me with his black beady eyes and twitchy whiskers. We looked at each other for a while and then he ran off again hiding behind one of my baskets. Oh that was it, I couldn't do it any more. I didn't know where he was or when he was going to jump out. I felt sick and shaky and just abandoned my task, boxes, tins and baskets lay strewn across the kitchen floor. Alfie bravely said that he would catch it for me so donned his wellies and took a Cath Kidston china bowl to catch him in (I ask you!). We saw him again peering at us from up high before he disappeared. Now if he promised to stay where I could see him I could probably clean up around him but not knowing when he was going to jump out just freaked me out. I have never been afraid of mice before, we get them regularly despite have 3 useless, heat seeking creatures they call CATS! I suspect they bring more into the house than they catch. No what bothers me dear reader is the unexpected, the suspense, the not knowing but the inevitable, the mouse is going to appear at some time, I just don't know when. I'm the same with balloons, I HATE them, I have a slight phobia about them as they are going to pop, I just don't know when. Silly thing is that when they do, It's ok, that's phobias for you.
So back to the mouse............I left the job and the next day went to see my Mum and Sister in town. They were coming back for the night and I told them my sorry tale. Mum was very sympathetic and despite being scared of mice herself she volunteered to help me when we got back but as it was Sister's last night with us I didn't want to spend it clearing out my pantry. We had a lovely evening, fish and chip supper, mulled wine then a session in the bar with CBB and topped it off with reminiscing over my Suede dvd (we were huge fans in the 90's went to loads of gigs). Just on our way up to bed, mum making hot water bottles, S said, 'where's this mouse then?". I hid behind her as she went into the pantry and I pointed to the spot where I last spotted him. He wasn't there. She told me to make friends with him and to give him a name. I chose Monty. I showed her the selection boxes belonging to Alfie and said I didn't want Monty to eat them. She said 'shall I get them down for you?' and I nodded pathetically. She brought down one box and put it on a lower shelf for me. At this point mum came up behind me and gently lay her hand on my shoulder. I jumped out of my skin and screeched again which made us all laugh. I was so on edge. S asked me if there was anything else I would like brought down and I said 'yes the other selection box please'. She pulled it down and said (very calmly and quietly), 'OK, the mouse is in the box'. I was off like a shot, quivering like a wreck in the living room. Mum said 'close the box, close the box, close the box' again very calmly but manically, then she said, 'ok, put it ouside on the floor, now RUN AWAY'. Run away?!!!!! Run away? From a tiny mouse? How did we get to this? I was still not happy about the situation as the mouse was now just outside the back door and might come in through the cat flap, aided and abetted by one of the useless furry things, so Saff went out and bravely shook the box until the mouse scurried away. After much laughter at our very silly girly behaviour we went to bed. I was so grateful to my wonderful and brave little sister for saving me. I also thought mum was a star as the last time she suported me through mouse trauma was years ago when the cats brought one in and let it free in my bedroom. That time she shouted words of encouragement to me whilst standing on the toilet, through my locked bathroom door!!
The next morning I looked at the box and its' contents outside. The chocolate was strewn across the floor and you could see that Monty clearly had a preference for KitKats as he had scoffed his way through an entire bar, spitting out the paper. I picked up the paper, untouched chocolate bars and the plastic tray from inside and took them into the house, swept up the mess and picked up the box. It moved. I peered inside, the bastard was back in the box!!!! I dropped the box and shuddering I ran back indoors to tell the others. Damn him, was I never going to be rid of him? Alfie put on his wellies and picked up the box. 'Hello' he said to the mouse, 'ah mum he's so sweet'. 'Yes I know he is now please can you take him away for me?' I asked. My little hero took the mouse around the corner and let him out near his den under the trees. That's the last I have seen of Monty, for now. I suspect he'll be back. I have still got to clean out the pantry, it still stinks, and I am still freaked out about it. Can someone please come and help me? Pin It