Last week I opened my baggies and plastic wrap drawer and out jumped a mouse. I'm not afraid of mice. But still, having one jump out at you from your baggies and plastic wrap drawer can be startling. I screamed. And then I laughed. And then I had to explain to my children, who came running, why I had screamed and laughed. And then I had to take them on a tour of the entire kitchen and living room to show them that really had no idea where the mouse had gone after that. (Daphne wanted to befriend him and name him Snanu. I'm not making that up.)
Next I found droppings in my baggies and plastic wrap drawer. Why the mouse had chosen to hang out and poop in that drawer is beyond me. There isn't anything slightly edible in there. So I washed out that drawer, sprayed it with bleach disinfectant, and put all the baggies and plastic wrap back in.
The next day I opened a nearby drawer, a sort of catch-all drawer containing things like birthday candles, chip clips, wooden skewers, and matches. I found more mouse droppings mixed in among the detritus of my cooking adventures. And candle shavings. What are candle shavings, you ask? Candle shavings are what's left after a mouse chews up a candle. Why Said Mouse had chosen to hang out and poop and eat candles in this drawer, I don't know. There are cupboards and drawers all over kitchen containing delectable items like chips, crackers, cereal and Peanut M&M's. And the counter at the time had brownies, cookies, and corn bread on it. But he hadn't touched that stuff. He had gone straight for the green, waxy candle. I thought this mouse must have brain damage.
Usually Flossie, my cat, is an excellent mouser. But this mouse seemed to be giving her some trouble. Flossie had haunted the corner of my kitchen where the mouse droppings had been spotted for two days. Then she had hung out in the corner of the dining room behind the radiator for a day or two, just staring. Next she staked out the little gap in the floorboards behind the living room TV. But she never seemed to be able to catch Said Mouse. I was beginning to think Said Mouse was more cunning than I had previously believed.
So I took matters into my own hand and bought mouse traps.
Day 1: I put the mouse traps, baited with peanut butter, in the two favored kitchen drawers (both of which had been revisited, if excrement is any sign). The next day? Both traps were licked clean. No mouse.
Day 2: I put new bait in the traps--peanut butter with a big chunk of hard bread smooshed down in it. I figured this way the mouse would have to tug at the bread, thereby setting off the traps. The next day? Both traps licked clean. No mouse.
Day 3: I went back to the store to get a different kind of trap. The kind with the super sensitive hair triggers. The kind that make me cringe in fear just setting them up. I baited them with cream cheese covered in peanut butter. I'm pretty sure that equals ambrosia in mouseland. I set up trap #1 on the kitchen counter, trap #2in the drawer, trap #3 behind the TV, and trap #4 next to the radiator. And this morning? Well, I'll let the pictures speak for themselves...
Worried, were you? Thought you were going to be forced to look at the mutilated body of a brainless mouse? Oh no. Not this mouse. This mouse is smart. Cunning. Crafty. And he has a sense of humor. Because as I was standing there staring dumbfounded at mousetrap #3 this morning, Said Mouse jumped out from his hole in the floorboards and trotted right past me. He didn't scurry. He didn't run. He moved like he knew just what he was doing...heading to get his breakfast from mousetrap #4.
I think this mouse is messing with me. And liking it.
Game on, Snanu. Game on.