The Mouse that Got Away

The day started with me in the bathroom staring at something that easily could have been a piece of black rice. After extensive testing and asking the “bug guy” who came to do his quarterly spraying what it was, it was determined it was nothing excreted from the floor of our house. When presented with the evidence, the bug guy tried to put me at ease, saying, “If you only saw one, it is probably from a cockroach.” [Please see the image below]

With the faithful bug guy alerted and spraying the whole house, I hoped he would leave with a smile on his face and the word, “nothing” on his lips. Unfortunately, this was not the case. While in the downstairs guest bedroom, he drew my attention to some additional evidence. “These look a little old. They are definitely from a mouse.” [The bug guy also told me about finding a raccoon in an attic in Dallas. The raccoon had a minion of rats that he did not hesitate to use as ammo on anyone who would enter his domain.] We did not have an infestation. We could not write the problem off. Somehow our house had acquired a mouse, and the evidence was in two rooms.

I didn’t immediately tell my wife. I let the visions of glue traps dance through my head. I worried about how I would find the ideal spot to place the traps in light of minimal evidence of our resident rodent. I tried to forgive myself for somehow allowing an uninvited creature to join our family. There is always room for geckos and small lizards to have easy access to our homes, but adding a warm-blooded home-crasher to the census was beyond what I could easily digest.

After dinner, I mentioned to my wife the excitement she had missed while at work. I mentioned the bug guy and the mouse evidence discovered by both him and me. I barely told her about my concerns when she said, “It was probably when [our daughter’s name] came over for Thanksgiving. She brought her hamster[Kevin], and he escaped one night. Remember how they couldn’t believe they found Kevin after Kevin was out of his cage for a few hours.” And, yes, I did remember.The present theory that the mouse wasn’t a mouse but a hamster is the preferred one. This does not mean we don’t have a very clean mouse strolling through the various rooms of our home with a creature following him making sure very little evidence is left behind. What I can say for sure is Kevin may look like a hamster, but in the eyes of a bug guy, he is a mouse.

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