“I’ve just been bitten on the neck by a vampire… mosquito. Does that mean that when the night comes I will rise and be annoying?”

Today is winter. Though the sky is steely blue and the sun is shiny, it’s cold, and we have snow. I’m guessing about 2 inches fell during the night, not enough for plows or even shovels but any snow is enough. From here inside my warm house, the snow is pretty and it glistens in the sun, but even Gracie was reluctant to go out when we first woke up. I had to trudge across the snowy lawn to get the newspapers, and when I did, I saw paw prints in the snow. I’m guessing Cody came to visit hoping Gracie was awake. She wasn’t and neither was I.

The mice count is now 15. Only a single tiny beast found its way into a trap yesterday. Either peanut butter is less desirable than it had been or the number of mice has dwindled. I know there are some on this floor so they are also my targets. I’ve already put down a couple of my trusty traps but no takers as yet. Only three more mice are needed to break my decades old record.

I have never been the type afraid of bugs or snakes or mice. Garter snakes were common when I was a kid. One of us would see a snake, announce its presence and all of us would run to watch. The bravest among us would pick it up and hold it for a while. In the field below our house, we used to run through the tall grass and spook the grasshoppers so they’d hop into the air and then we’d catch them with our bare hands. We caught fireflies in jars but we always released them. Fireflies were special. In the swamp, we’d use jars to scoop up tadpoles and our hands to grab the frogs. Dirt and grime were never a problem.

In Ghana I saw poisonous snakes: one was in the bushes outside my classroom block. My students killed it by pelting rocks at it. Lizards were everywhere, including my house. In training, on our first day, I saw lizards scurrying across the concrete walks as I went to breakfast. I’ll never forget that morning. It was my first I’m really in Africa moment.

I have no plans for today, no errands and no chores. It’s a perfect sloth day. It’s a stay in my cozies, read a bit and take a nap day.

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22 Comments on ““I’ve just been bitten on the neck by a vampire… mosquito. Does that mean that when the night comes I will rise and be annoying?””


  1. you will transform in to an African vampire for sure…. midnight come…

  2. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    I went to visit a friend in Texas a couple of years ago. On the drive from the airport I saw a dead armadillo and then a field full of prickly pear cacti. There were tiny lizards on the trees. It was my Texas moment. 🙂

    You have probably selected out for peanut butter loving mice by now. You might have to switch bait to get the remainder. Here’s hoping there aren’t too many more left.

    Sunny and cold up here. No snow for us last night and that’s fine. I screwed up my foot again by shoveling the stuff the other day. Couldn’t be helped. I had an appointment and my snow plow guy hadn’t shown up by the time I needed to leave.

    Enjoy the day.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      I know exactly that feeling, just at a different place!

      The trap instructions, which were put in lure, leave cover open and lean trap at the back, recommended peanut butter. It seems mice really enjoy it. I also tried cheese but they didn’t seem all that attracted to it. Maybe I shouldn’t have used domestic.

      I just got my feet and bottom of my pants soaked. I went on the deck to fill the feeder. The cover is usually attached to that feeder but it wasn’t and the cover fell below so down the steps to the backyard in all that snow. The steps are really steep but the rail was covered in snow as were the steps. Luckily my usual bad luck stayed away, and I made it. Then I took a nap!

      How is your foot now?

      • Caryn Says:

        My foot is annoyingly painful and requires crutches. I see the orthopedist on Thursday. I hope he can make it go away because the repeated cycling between not quite lame and hobbling on crutches is beginning to get tiresome. I have things to do that require feet that work. 🙂

      • katry Says:

        Caryn,
        I understand having sprained my ankle so badly I had to hobble on crutches for three weeks. The doctor told me I’d have been better off breaking it.

  3. olof1 Says:

    They say that we might get -22F here tonight if the sky clears up! I don’t mind cold weather but that’s is a bit too cold so I’m hoping for thick clouds tonight. I won’t even mind if it snows to be honest 🙂 🙂 🙂

    I liked most animals when I was a kid, expect for spiders and big beetles. I like spiders now days but still doesn’t like it when big beetles land on me 🙂 -) I’ve always liked snakes and I used to pick them up and move them when I rented a cottage for several years. It was the only poisonous snake we have and normally I would have left them alone but I had a cat that was a bit too interested in them so they had to move 🙂

    Have a great day!
    Christer.

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      That is far too cold! We’ll get down to 8˚ Monday or Tuesday night but the rest of the nights will be in the 20’s. Today is in the 30’s. This is the worst cold spell so far this winter so I won’t complain.

      We have some poisonous snakes in Massachusetts but I haven’t ever seen one. I would have called someone to move one if they ever appeared in my yard as Gracie would want to play with it.

      Enjoy the evening!

  4. Hedley Says:

    Mrs MDH has just sent me a photo of an ex mouse dumped in the middle of the Family Room. Drilled in the basement and brought upstairs for everyone’s enjoyment.
    Would it help if I send the picture on to Gracie ?
    Mrs MDH is not pleased and doesnt want to deal with the Trophy. The Mouse Mauler is relaxing and enjoying her achievement

    • Caryn Says:

      My terrier used to bring them to the door and ask to be let out so she could deposit them on the front walk for the entire neighborhood to view. S’alright with me. 🙂

    • katry Says:

      My Dear Hedley,
      Applause for Maggie!!! I think she might enjoy a trip to lovely Cape Cod with the promise of hunting and playing.

      Gracie would just shrug and go back to sleep!

      I never mine throwing away the dead ones the cats catch, but I won’t pick up a live one except for the ones in the trap which I don’t have to touch or even see until I dump them outside to find new homes.

      The Mouse Mauler deserves a prize!!

      • Hedley Says:

        Caryn and KatVamp
        Mrs MDH is thoroughly irritated, showing fake indignation that I haven’t left the office to deal with the Trophy.
        Terriers are paid the big bucks to follow their natural instincts and expect praise for their efforts
        Of course there was the time when Maggie drilled a friend’s pet guinea pig but I was sworn to secrecy 🙂

      • katry Says:

        MDH,
        That sound you hear is me laughing out loud about the Guinea pig!

      • Hedley Says:

        Would you like dessert said our hosts, I think we need to go home now said I, and the Terrier was removed, in some disgrace, to the car.
        The next day I got a call regarding the demise of the aforementioned guinea pig with the instruction that it was never to be mentioned again.

      • katry Says:

        MDH,
        I believe said Terrier figured this was her treat.

        Guinea pig is the national dish in Ecuador. I saw many if them running around in pens and cages. Said Terrier would be quite pleased with her menu options!

  5. Caryn Says:

    Hedley,
    😀 😀 😀
    Though I am sorry for the guinea pig.
    We only had cats with our terrier. The cats were as big as she was and street mean. They were also identified as “MINE!!!”, which meant that she was forbidden to touch them. Ever. A prohibition which they exploited to their advantage whenever possible. 🙂

    • Hedley Says:

      Caryn
      The Guinea pig was a family pet and to this day their kids (who are now grown) do not know that Maggie was the one who x’d it.

  6. Bob Says:

    Hi Kat,
    I have been very busy here in New Jeresy. There is nothing like staying in a hotel for a week. Cooked to order breakfast, maid service and eating every meal in a restaurant. What could be better and my company is picking up the tab.

    I have read your blog most days this week and maybe the mice are coming back. Have you ever heard of homing rodents 🙂 The word is out among the mice. Kat’s house for warmth, good food and the worst thing that can happen is she will trap you and then let you go. Not as good as a suite hotel, but not bad either.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Bob,
      I wondered where you were! Your absence was noted!!

      I got a good laugh from your ad for my prestigious hotel. Not only are they enjoying the comforts of my home but they are also learning to avoid the trap.

      On-line I read that mice do have a homing sense up to one mile so I have extended their ride in the car except I let the last two out close to home as it was raining and snowing so I didn’t want to go riding.

      It’s true about the comforts of a hotel. When I was in Morocco that’s exactly how I felt except I was picking up the tab!

      The best was breakfast on the roof of the hotel with a view of the Atlas Mountains.

  7. Rowen Says:

    Dying of envy of your sloth day. 😉 Hope you had a wonderful time.


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