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Hearts September 28, 2012

Posted by indigobunting in Uncategorized.

There must be hundreds of hearts living under this roof. Maybe thousands.

It’s an old house. 1890ish. Tim and I will never be the only hearts beating here. Ants, spiders, moths, insects I will never see call this place home. And mice. God, the mice.

It’s been worse than usual this year. Chinks have again developed in our slate foundation. I have a guy who’s going to fill those up before winter. But in and out of the basement go the mice. Chipmunks too, no doubt, although I haven’t seen a chipmunk in the house yet.

I know it’s stupid that I can’t seem to willingly kill them. It’s not like I’m a vegetarian (which doesn’t mean I would eat the mice, only that dead animals are a regular part of my life). It’s not like I want them here. Sometimes they really piss me off.

For instance, I was in the front hall early in the week, and I put on my hiking shoes, which had been sitting there maybe two days since last use. Someone had dropped some bird seed in them.

So I set one of my traps—you know, like Havaharts, only these are called Mice Cubes—by the shoes along with the one in the kitchen, the one in the basement, the one in the mudroom. Each morning: no mouse in the front-hall trap. I began to wonder if maybe I’d gotten that seed in my shoes myself when I’d cleaned up around the feeder.

But last night, just as I was falling asleep, I heard the distinctive banging of an animal downstairs.

I’m always amazed by how much bigger-than-actual-size any animal can sound. Squirrels in the woods sound raccoon sized. Raccoons sound bear sized. I’m not sure I want to know how big bears sound.

I was not going to get any sleep with that Chihuahua-sized-sounding mouse banging around in the Mice Cube. I had to get up, robe up, and release it on the front porch. Not ideal, but it was out of the house for at least a few minutes. No more banging.

The usual morning to routine is to walk down to the creek to release the captive. At least then they have an uphill climb to the house.

I am not naïve enough to think that they don’t come back.

They don’t miss a beat.


1. Lynda Corbett - September 28, 2012

Time for a cat. I’ve found two dead mice (fully intact) in my house in as many weeks. I’m so proud of my boys! Although I don’t believe Biscuit had much to do with it 🙂

2. Helen - September 28, 2012

As a person who tries to rescue mice from my cats and give them a safe haven in the garage, I applaud your catch and release program.

And I love your observation about the oversized sounds animals make. It’s so true…

3. Mali - September 30, 2012

I have nothing profound to say. I’m just glad you’re writing.

4. Eulalia Benejam Cobb - October 1, 2012

I don’t mind mice so much among fall intruders. But oh, those great big wolf spiders!

5. indigo bunting - October 2, 2012

A friend told me that his brother, before releasing mice as far as a half-mile from his house, would put a dot of paint on each mouse head. Yes, they came back, even from those distances.

Mali - October 5, 2012

Perhaps he just started a new mouse-fashion?

indigo bunting - October 6, 2012

Oh, I’d like to believe that!

6. LisaS - October 5, 2012

i’d loan you a cat, but you’re too far. and yes, i’m glad you’re writing too. so exert a little peer pressure on me …

indigo bunting - October 6, 2012

Go Lisa! (I hope I’m writing. I don’t seem to be writing.)

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