So the weather has started to change. It actually started to get cooler here at the house a few weeks ago. The days would still get in the high 70’s or even the low 80’s but the nights would fall. Sometimes as low as the 50’s.
This change in the weather has actually been a wonderful change. It’s given us partial relief from the mosquitoes as well as given us the chance to get the fire pit going, etc… It also has meant that the critters outside are starting to look for shelter.
So the other night, after dinner, I was working in my office when all of a sudden I hear a crash and all sorts of pandemonium break out in the main living space of the house. Enough where I got worried and shot up out of the chair toward the ruckus.
As I turned the corner of the office and into the hallway Melissa was already out of her chair at the dining room table and headed toward the back bedrooms.
“What’s up?” I blurted out. “I don’t know but there’s something there and I’m not staying here to find out what it is!” was the reply. To be honest, after the bat incidents, I can’t blame her for that reaction.
As I come walking down the hall toward the dining room and kitchen I see the following: (1) A very confused, just awakened 85 pound dog trying to figure out what’s going on; (2) A very beautiful girlfriend of mine who is clearly trying to get out of the room at the quickest possible speed; (3) and a black & white cat who is extremely proud of himself.
And for good reason. He has a tiny mouse in his mouth.
First… A little background. Neither one of my cats have ever expressed an interest in any other living thing (myself included) unless said thing had the ability to give them food. At no time while we were living in Chicago did either one of my cats ever chase a bug, spider, mosquito or fly that had gotten into my house. My clearest recollection was watching Miles casually observe a spider that had awoken him one summer afternoon by walking down his face. Once awake Miles simply watched the spider slowly motor on and then, after a very big yawn, curl back up and go back to bed for at least 6 hours.
Now that we’re in the country things seem to have changed. All of a sudden Miles has taken on a very aggressive personality trait. He chases just about everything. Keeper being his number one target.
So, getting back to the story.
As I enter the dining room I observe Miles with this tiny mouse in his mouth. There is complete chaos reigning around him as Melissa attempts to get out of the dining room, the dog attempts to figure out what’s going on and what he’s supposed to be doing about it and Miles, completely surprised to find a mouse in his mouth I’m sure, tries to figure out what he’s supposed to do next. Add to this confusion my bumbling into the room and it just gets stranger.
Upon seeing me lurching into the room Miles drops the mouse in the living room. Melissa and the dog get into the bedroom and here I am with no clue trying to figure out what to do. Meanwhile this tiny field mouse (apparently they don’t run like city mice) is bouncing all over the living room. And by that I mean it was literally bouncing (a la Q-Bert style) from one spot to the next.
The mouse is completely freaked out for a good 20 seconds. In this time I realize that I need to get something to catch this thing with and head to the kitchen. Melissa regains her composure and goes to get something to put under the plastic bowl I’ve managed to grab and the cat is now probably getting a little upset that his mouse is getting away.
2 seconds later the mouse realizes that he needs to split if he wants to survive and heads along the wall toward the stairs that lead to the basement. In order for the mouse to successfully escape it will need to jump down about 3 feet to the landing from the dining room level and then scoot down the remaining stairs to the basement.
This is where action cat comes into play. As the mouse (who we’ve already nicknamed Stewart Little) scooted along the wall Miles leapt into action. As the mouse reached the point where it would need to jump we thought that it was going to escape.
But lo and behold! Miles sprung forward and at the last second reached over the side of the landing and snagged the little dude with his paw from mid-air as the mouse dropped. Quickly placing the again captive mouse in his mouth he proudly marched into the middle of the living room.
Finally I was able to catch the little guy. Miles hadn’t hurt it in all of the commotion.
After disposing of it Miles got a congratulatory 3rd dinner and then proceeded to stake out the kitchen for 2 days in hopes of finding another.
So far we’ve been lucky and haven’t had another one.