When I found the first mouse (silent shiver), I mentioned to my husband that it looked like another trap had been chewed a little. He admitted that he’d noticed that too, but he was “sure” the teeth marks were from the trapped mouse. Yeah, right. He also admitted that they’d pulled a dead mouse out when cleaning the HVAC, but he hadn’t told me.
I admit that these are good things NOT to tell me. I don’t want to know. The thing is when you do tell me – even if you’re just confirming something I’ve noticed on my own – it always adds the silent question in my head, so what else have you noticed? You’ve disposed of a dozen other mice, haven’t you? You’ve seen them running around everywhere? You fought one off that was attacking the baby?!?! OK, we have to move. But I’m Irish Catholic, so I am very good at repressing all this. I have years of experience. So I just pretend that none of those thoughts have occurred to me and move on.
Until it comes up again.
I went down to the basement to move clothes and noticed the one bug (cum mouse) trap that had some bite marks in it before seemed to have MORE bite marks in it and it had moved. The three mice I’d found on traps before had all been stuck on pretty well – ok, one wasn’t so WELL stuck – he was trying really hard to free himself, but still. And one was dead. I convinced myself that the second mouse we found must have been the one to put the bite marks on the other trap. So I was feeling in the clear. I hadn’t seen any evidence of mice or found one in a few weeks. I was even getting to the point where I was (somewhat) willing to check the far side of the basement (on my own!) to make sure there were no mice on the traps there.
Now in that checking, I’d noticed some of the insulation pulled out on the ground (a pretty clear sign of mice), but I again convinced myself that it was from the original mice and I just hadn’t checked. It was NOT new mice. (No, I didn’t pick it up. If I bend over to get it, the mice might be laying in wait and attack me! Are you kidding?)
But then I saw the trap with the edge all chewed up that had been moved.
I mentioned this to my husband and, with a sigh, he admitted he’d seen it too. And my imagination went into overdrive on what other signs of mice he’d seen and hadn’t told me about! Cause think about it – the traps had caught the three tiny field mice we’d seen. But this one isn’t being caught by the traps! He’s able to “steal” the bugs stuck to the traps for food (so not really “steal,” as these aren’t “baited” with bugs – they’re just bug traps too.) and not get stuck himself. This must be a mouse on steroids! The king of mice! Mighty mouse! … a rat. Oh crap. And I haven’t found it yet…
And thanks for that new set of nightmares.
What still gives you nightmares as an adult? If you have/had mice, how have you gotten rid of them (I’m thinking of just paving over our whole yard and adding booby traps. I just have to think of a way to get the HOA to go for it.)? Or do you have stories about other pesks?