Posted tagged ‘mouse trap’

“You either get Africa or you don’t…”

July 7, 2017

“Okay, I am in crisis mode as my laptop isn’t working. It stopped last night. Now it makes a noise and the battery isn’t recharging. The computer boots but I am warned about the low battery. I’m going to have to visit an Apple Store. I am using my iPad, and I hate it for typing. The keyboard is either too small or my fingers are too large.

Today is humid and chilly, the sort of chill that goes to the bone because of the dampness. It wasn’t raining when I went out with the dog, but as soon as we got outside, the rain started. Of course it did.

Last night the back outside lights didn’t come on. I have to check them, but I’m thinking the spawns ate them again. They ate red lights off the last sets so I’m wondering what color attracted them to this set. I swear the spawns who come here are crazy. There was the summer of the paint eating spawn who gnawed all the black paint off the chair arms. This one may be related.

The mouse trap is still vacant of any resident. It is filled with peanut butter. Either the mouse isn’t hungry or there are no more kitchen mice.

The summer has been uneventful. It is still early, I know, but nothing is planned. Last year I had Ghana ahead of me. That set the bar so very high that little will compete with the excitement and the countdown of the days watching the trip get closer and closer.

When I look at my pictures from Ghana, there is still a sense of amazement. I was in Africa. I wonder if my far younger me would believe I had lived there and it had an every day quality about it. I know I mention Ghana here often, but it is so much a part of whom I am I can’t help but write about it. It shines so brightly in my memory banks. The colors and sounds are so vivid. Going back has only intensified my feelings about Ghana and the wonderful Ghanaians.

I can only hear the rain.

 

 

 

 

“People don’t take trips, trips take people.”

June 20, 2017

Cloudy, rainy weather is now on day 4. The breeze today is strong, and the humidity gives it a chilly dampness. The thick air subdues sound. I don’t even hear the birds.

Gracie is sleeping on the couch after her hectic two days. I haven’t been able to give her the morning pills yet. She is far too smart. I gave her some deli turkey this morning, and she spit out any piece with a hidden pill. She ate the rest. I’m down to hand in mouth pill distribution. Gracie has actually eaten a whole can of dog food. I’ll try a second can later.

Another mouse got caught in my trap two weeks after the exterminator was here. I noticed poop on the floor near the trap, a sign of a nervous mouse, so I checked. It was a gray, adult field mouse. I took it and the trap to the car, drove a bit then let the mouse go. It bounded through the tall grass. I never realized mice could bound.

On Sunday night, I was out back with Gracie. The house behind me on the next street had three outside lights lit. All of a sudden I heard a guy scream, “Come on, rabbits, I’m ready.” He yelled that a couple of times. I figure he has a garden the rabbits are enjoying. Beyond that, I have no idea what awaits those poor creatures. Peter Rabbit and Watership Down came to mind.

I finally loaded my Ghana trip pictures to the computer. I also loaded and posted last Christmas, this Easter and February’s snow storm. I did all this yesterday while I was waiting to hear about Gracie. I needed to keep busy. Looking through my trip pictures was joyful. I got to relive it all. The only thing I’d change about that trip is maybe to make it longer, spend a few more days watching elephants and use a day to visit the Rhino preserve on the river.

I have Peace Corps friends who have no intention of going back to Ghana. I know things have changed. The cities are huge and choked with traffic. People are everywhere: walking, riding in cars or taxis or on bikes, but inherently Ghana hasn’t changed nor have the wonderful Ghanaian people. In Bolga, market day is still every third day. Mostly women sell cooked food along the sides of the roads. Kids are still drawn to white people though I don’t understand why. I know in my day it was the rarity of white people in the Upper Region. Taxi drivers still inflate the fares so we still get to bargain. The food was and still is amazing, except for kenkey which I never liked. If I were rich enough, I’d go back for a farewell tour.

“He looks at you like you’re crème brûlée.”

June 4, 2017

The morning has been quite exciting. Last week I put a mouse trap (a non-killing one) on the kitchen floor. Inside was a blob of peanut butter. I was hoping to catch the mouse which lives in the cabinet. Every day I’d check and find an empty trap. After a week, I left the trap on the floor but stopped checking. This morning I noticed mouse poop on the floor around the outside of the trap. Yup, I had caught a mouse, a small gray very upset field mouse. I took the trap for a ride and let the mouse go. I’m going to put the trap back just in case, but I do have a question. How is it a week after the exterminator came that a healthy mouse still sublets my kitchen?

I’m watching Reasonable Doubt on ID and chuckling. The two main investigators are front and center and the camera loves them. It pans to each face over and over as the two give knowing looks to each other as they listen to the father of the murderer describe the events. We get to watch them write in notebooks. They seem to use cursive. The father speaks English without an accent yet he is subtitled. The female lead, a former defense lawyer, uses her middle finger to make a point when tapping the table. We get to watch her finger. She taps quite well. The male lead, a former police officer, says axed instead of asked. He needs subtitles. “I have no dog in this fight,” is another comment of his. That’s a new one for me. Why am I still watching you wonder? I am hooked at how horrible this program is.

It did rain last night but not for long. Today is lovely. We’re back to sunny and warm. This weather has become a pattern. The sunny warm days give way to chilly nights. The house is colder than outside in the early morning. Sunny days and rainy nights come every couple of days. According to the weatherman, it could even rain tonight.

It’s game night. I’m bringing dessert, a tiramisu dip with lady fingers for dunking.

“Grown up, and that is a terribly hard thing to do. It is much easier to skip it and go from one childhood to another.”

June 17, 2014

The streets were wet this morning so it rained during the night. The morning started out as cloudy, but the sun is in and out so I hope it might just end up being a pleasant afternoon.

That was one exciting soccer game last night. The US scored in just the first forty or so seconds but Ghana later tied the score. After the US broke the tie, I sat on the edge of my seat for what seemed like forever, but Ghana didn’t score. The US won 2-1.

I have only caught 4 mice in the cellar trap. The fourth was released last night. He had been in the trap about a day and was totally scared, even in a panic. It took a while before he’d leave the trap. I hope he finds some friends in his new neighborhood. I’ll bait then return the trap to the cellar later. Mice do like peanut butter.

Every time we went to the beach when I was young, I collected shells and a few dead starfish. The shells I got to keep but not the starfish. They always started to stink and out they went. Sometimes I’d find a really neat stone by the water, a flat, round stone with different shades of gray across it, and I’d save that too. Those shells and stones were my first collection.

I’ve noticed that being a kid and being older have a lot in common. I know if I wore plaids and prints or plaids and poker dots people would just think my ensemble was chosen by an old woman who has lost her fashion sense. When I was a kid, we didn’t have any fashion sense. I wore what was in the bureau drawer, and matching wasn’t taken into account. At stores like Woolworth’s or Grant’s, I always took my time choosing what to buy with my dime or quarter. My slowness probably drove the adults crazy, but I never noticed their impatience. I do notice old people in stores and how slowly they walk or push their carriages, and I’m often caught behind them. They stop in the middle of the aisle. I say excuse me so I can pass but most times they don’t move. I figure they didn’t hear me so I ask more loudly. If they don’t move,  I just backtrack and change aisles. I wonder sometimes if I am looking at my future and one day I’ll be in the middle of the aisle. Kids and old people are discourteous at times. I used to think old people felt entitled because they had lasted so long. Kids just do what they can away with doing.

It occurred to me that there is a name for this phenomenon, for this similarity. First there’s childhood then second childhood with all its rights and privileges.

“A good cook is like a sorceress who dispenses happiness.”

April 26, 2014

It’s not winter even though my heater is going so I’m stuck calling this spring despite the cold and cloudiness. I suppose it could be sprinter, a new name for the shoulder season which isn’t one or the other. Rain is expected later, and I can already feel the dampness and the chill. I just put on some socks.

That weird trap caught another mouse yesterday. That’s two for the trap and one for the washing machine. I checked around 10:30 last night, and there it was inside the trap circling the small perimeter. I got Gracie and the two of us went for a ride. The mice are being freed at a different spot than last year’s just for novelty sake. This second freedom run went rather quickly because I had already figured out on the first run how to get the mouse out of the new trap. I watched it running toward the woods lit by my headlights and wished him well and hoped he’d find his friend, the mouse freed the other day. Today’s update: no mouse this morning.

When I run into weird words, I always wonder how I know their meanings. They’re not everyday words, were never vocabulary words and are used mostly by pompous people who scatter their conversations with archaic words so as to appear learned and intelligent. I chuckle. Pomposity does that to me.

My mother made great tapioca pudding. I liked it hot, scraping the pan hot, and I liked it cold. It was also one of my dad’s favorites. My mother made it more often than any other pudding, even more than chocolate. Sometimes I buy already made tapioca, and none of it ever compares to my mother’s.

I loved my mother’s pepper and egg combination. She made it for the beach and for road picnics when we were young. When we were older, it was often a side at barbecues at my parent’s house. My mother originally got the recipe from her sister which, I figure, gives it the stature of a family recipe. The squash dish always on our Thanksgiving tables came from another of my mother’s sister, but my mother unknowingly tweaked it. She switched butternut for zucchini. My uncle’s sausage cacciatore is one of legend. My sisters and I make it.

Food ties us to each other more than anything else.

“If one mouse is a spark…then ten thousand are a conflagration.”

April 24, 2014

The morning has already been a busy one. I let Gracie out then heard a bang. I turned and saw the gate had flown open. I looked for Gracie hoping she hadn’t escaped and then I saw her still in the yard, close to the gate. I yelled stay as if that had any meaning for Gracie then ran down the stairs and shut the gate. Catastrophe was averted.

The second problem started last night when I went to do laundry. I was about to stuff the clothes in the washer when I noticed a baby mouse in the tub of the washing machine. I used my sweatshirt, captured the tiny thing and just threw him over the fence. I imagine he’ll be back. Figuring there were more, I went looking and found my have-a-heart trap. I tried to set it but one end wouldn’t work. The mouse would have eaten the goodies then left on the side which didn’t close. I decided to use the weird trap I’d bought a while back. It is small, a circular wire cage on a piece of wood. The top has a hole but when the mouse enters the hole it can’t get out because of wire prongs circling the bottom of that hole. In the front is a small escape hatch with a wire hook which I have to open to free the beast. I decided to give it try, threw in some bread and put it in the cellar in a spot I can see from the stairs. This morning I looked and lo and behold I had my first mouse. Gracie and I went for a ride. I stopped to free the beastie, but I couldn’t get it to leave the trap. He held on no matter what I did, including a bit of tail tugging. Finally I banged the wood with the trap door facing the ground and out the mouse fell. He was gone to his new neighborhood in a heartbeat. At least he’d been well fed before the trip.

I changed my bed, finished my book, emptied the litter boxes, cleaned out the fridge, did two loads of laundry, caught mice and watered the plants. I need a vacation.

Yesterday it rained all day. At times we had thunder and even some hail. Today is sunny but still a bit chilly. Gracie and I have a leftover errand postponed from yesterday, and that’s it for the day. I’m done in!

“Love the animals: God has given them the rudiments of thought and joy untroubled.”

March 14, 2013

Yesterday was a delight. Though it was a bit chilly, the sun shined all day. I left my self-imposed hibernation and went outside to do some yard work and Gracie came with me. When I’d finished, I stood on the deck for a while and watched Gracie try to figure out how to carry a slightly deflated basketball in her mouth. She managed and ran around the yard in triumph. I did a laundry, changed my bed and the cat litter, filled the feeders and went on an errand. It was an industrious day all brought about because of the sun. It was like I had my battery recharged. Today is cloudy.

The mouse trap sat in the cellar for over a week, and I only caught two. It is now on the kitchen floor, and I haven’t caught any. Once there were mice. I cleaned out a kitchen drawer and found cloth and cardboard had been gnawed into small pieces, and the mice had left their familiar droppings. I threw stuff away, put most in the dishwasher and hand-washed other stuff. When I took out the drawer, I found piles of chewed paper and more droppings underneath it. With a vengeance, I scrubbed the drawer and under the drawer, and now that everything is clean, I keep checking both drawers, but there are no more tell-tale signs of current mice in residence. I’ll leave the trap for a few more days, but I’m guessing it was Maddie who rid this floor of rodents.

I never saw wild life when I was a kid. I don’t even remember seeing a skunk. I saw lots of fireflies, grasshoppers, tadpoles, frogs and a few snakes, but that was it. The only wildlife I saw was in the zoo. It never occurred to me I was missing anything. I got to see the cows at the farm and the horse in the pasture not far from my house, and that was enough. Here on the Cape I have seen   coyotes, foxes, deer, possums, raccoons and skunks. The latest are the wild turkeys. They are numerous and don’t mind strolling down the street as if in a parade. I love it when I see any of these animals. It means the Cape still has space for both of us.