Wednesday, February 6, 2008

I'm terrified of mice!

It's funny how you can think something is so bad and then something else comes along that is way worse… Life is always like that. Someone else always has it worse than you do.

Now really, honestly, I can't complain. I shouldn't complain. But something just happened that is so gross I can't help but let it out. You see, we have mice in our kitchen. I am deathly terrified of mice. Now to those of you who grew up on farms, or just possess amazingly strong stomachs I apologize. I am terrible with rodents.

We have tried some things to make the mice want to leave. We put all of the food in ziplock bags, but they ate through them. I have resorted to a few large rubermade totes for most of our storage and smaller tupperware for everything else. Alas, we live in a guest house so we have different people in and out all the time. For some reason none of them seem as concerned as me about the whole situation and they leave food out a lot.

Most of the time the mice are kind enough to only come out at night, so all I see is their ever-present poop. A few weeks ago Jason killed one with a broom. Then a few days later I opened the silverware drawer in our big wooden cabinet in the kitchen and almost put my hand right on top of one. I screamed and ran outside to call Jason (who was on top of the roof adjusting an internet thing). He got two other guys and together they pulled out the drawer, the mouse jumped high in the air and when it landed it was promptly smashed to death with a broom and fed to the dog. So yay! Our mouse problem was gone, no worries! Or so I thought.

Even though I wasn't seeing any more mice (we seemed to have killed off the two boldest) I was still seeing a lot of poop. Then on Monday night someone (with a last name of Atkins, but not me) overfilled the water filter so that on Tuesday morning water had filtered through and overflowed all over the counter, floor, and most annoyingly into the drawer under the filter. I took the drawer out, dried off all of the utensils, and Jason put it out in the sun to dry out. Later that day we had two Brazilian couples over for tacos (they were really really delicious) and when I bent down to get the mugs out of the cabinet below where the drawer had been I saw a dead mouse in the back. We're pretty sure it died of being smashed to death when the drawer closed. The drawers stick really bad so most of the time I close them with a hip ramming. I was totally grossed out but kept it together and Jason and I didn't really discuss it until the company left.

After that we had to go do a staff internet training, etc, etc, and when we did finally get back to the kitchen the lights were off, which is weird because I always leave them on. The switch by the door doesn't work so you have to walk all the way across the pitch black kitchen to turn them on, and that just seems like a death wish to me. Anyway Jason and slowly made our way to the light switch and when we turned it on two mice jumped out of the dish rack and ran down behind the stove. Again, screaming burst from my mouth. Then more mice ran around the other side of the room past me and behind the fridge (Jason says they were the same ones, but I am skeptical). So I ran upstairs and we didn't get a chance to take care of the dead mouse last night.

Today Jason and I went down to the kitchen to remove the carcass. Really Jason was the one who was going to do the removing, I just sat in a chair shuddering. As I said before, deathly terrified of mice… I knew that something was wrong when Jason said "Wow!" and started laughing. I asked him what was up but he said that if he told me I wouldn't sleep for a week. Well, then I had to know, so I asked again. He said that the body was full of big maggots that had eaten pretty much all of the meat. I did not want to see it and I did not allow him to take a picture (you can thank me for that since he definitely would've made me post it here). Actually I just started crying. Jason disposed of the mouse and then I asked him if he thought we should check the other drawers just to be sure. He pulled out one of the two other drawers and sure enough another dead mouse, this one creased in an L-shape from being smashed by the back of the drawer (or so I was told). This was just too much for me so I retreated to the upstairs to share the story with you. Jason has joined me and informed me that the other mouse was not full of maggots, but that is a small comfort.

So really, the worm in the tomato was a little shocking but only because it was unexpected, this was just gross. I know it could be way worse than this. There are rats here that are more than a foot tall and really fat. Like I said, I can't complain, I shouldn't complain… and yet here I am. I mean, I just thought you should know...