The Thing Upstairs

We hadn't heard it now for several weeks. The nocturnal scratching and digging noises coming from the attic above our bedroom. Claudia took a much desired but highly forbidden trip up to the promised land last month, and whether it was because her scent scared it off, or she ate it with some fava beans and a nice Chianti, we haven't heard it since.

Last night, though, we came face to face. The mysterious source of the 3am wakeup calls. It looked like this, although not as cute, and minus the couture.

And when we met, I screamed like a 7 year old girl.

We met on the stairs to the attic. I was going down. He was going up. He was admittedly small, and probably more scared of me than I was of him. And I consider myself an animal lover. And mice? Not that big a deal, right? I mean, Christine even named hers. But I was seriously skeeved. My reaction actually surprised me. And the first thing I did after this close encounter of the vermin kind? I ran to the bathroom and scrubbed my hands. Vigorously. Even thought my hands were obviously nowhere near the mouse.

The cats knew immediately that something was up. They were all upstairs, milling about in the hallway for quite sometime. They either sensed the unwelcome visitor, or were concerned about my girlish screams. I like to think it was the latter, but it was probably the former. They eventually settled down, though, and so did I. I went to sleep.

Rich woke me up this morning, telling me, "The mouse is downstairs. I saw it." AHHHHH!!!! Apparently, the cats had alerted him that something was up. They were attempting to jump, swat, and trap something lurking behind one of the doors in our living room. Rich took a peek, and guess who was hanging out there? Needless to say, I stayed in bed, feet firmly tucked under the covers, several feet above the floor and out of harm's way. I've realized I am a massive wuss. Feel free to laugh and throw things at me. Rich found an empty container, scooped up Fieval, and after having a good five-minute conversation with him about how cute he was, how he looked like Ralph from The Mouse and the Motorcycle, and asking him whether or not he might like to stay on as a playmate for the cats, released him outside by our garage, far away from the house.

Now I'm worried the attic is infested. We're going to buy some humane traps tonight. Oh, did I fail to mention where the door to the attic is located? It's in the baby's room.

11 Responses to “The Thing Upstairs”

  1. # Blogger Marie


    I'm surprised the cats let him live! And that the mouse was so slow that Rich was able to catch him.

    You're too funny Kristi!  

  2. # Anonymous Jenny

    It's funny how we react to things like that. When I was living with Karin in our apartment on Meigs St., her, Kellie, and I went out one night. When we came home Taz was in the middle of the living floor with a mouse. I won't be too graphic but I'll say Taz had gotten to the mouse but it was still alive... just not moving fast. Anyway, all of a sudden I was on top of a footstool and Karin was standing on the couch. Kellie looked at us and laughed, caught the mouse and out of the house it went. I like to say if Kellie hadn't been there I would've been fine and taken care of it but I'm sure today my reaction would be the same. (And I agree with Marie - suprised the cats let him live!)  

  3. # Blogger Kross-Eyed Kitty

    Oh No!!!!
    Hopefully little mouse was the only attic dweller.
    I'm glad that Rich got rid of him humanely though. Little Mouse was likely more scared of you and all your kitties! They must have been excited though, eh?!  

  4. # Blogger Christine

    You know very well that I also screamed like a seven year old girl upon meeting SLJ. Pathetic is what it was. I should get a cat or three to corner our mouse.

    Actually *knock on wood* we haven't seen him or her or her offspring for a while. I think they got sick of eating peanut butter out of our humane traps (without getting caught, not once)...and went next door for better food.

    Good luck with the mice. Lemme know if you catch anything, and what you used! I used Victor traps, the ones that supposedly catch one. Yeah, apparently they just stay open all the damn time until *I* bump into one. Whoa, what a long comment.  

  5. # Blogger Hopeful Mother

    Too funny! I hope this particular resident was a "single" and not part of a family...  

  6. # Anonymous sher

    Some cats are not good mousers. I had two cats years ago that were as different as night and day in this matter. One was a champion mouse killer, while the other would simply stare at them and make no attempt at all to harm them. The humane mousetraps work very well, in my experience. But, we had to trap a mom and her kids, so that took several days because the trap only holds a few mice at a time. They love peanut butter or cookies. But, release them well away from your house.

    Hey, it could have been rats or squirrels--they are really smart. Mice are kind of clueless.  

  7. # Blogger Shannon

    Oh yeah, you definitely need to get rid of them, even if it means calling an exterminator, because if there's one, there's many. Not to be too alarmist but you don't want to be around mouse droppings, you or the baby. I just did a quick Google search on "pregnant mouse droppings" and quite a bit of warning stuff came up for pregnant women.  

  8. # Blogger Shannon

    Oh yeah, you definitely need to get rid of them, even if it means calling an exterminator, because if there's one, there's many. Not to be too alarmist but you don't want to be around mouse droppings, you or the baby. I just did a quick Google search on "pregnant mouse droppings" and quite a bit of warning stuff came up for pregnant women.  

  9. # Blogger Binulatti

    Yipes! Maybe someone told him that "there are no cats in America, and the streets are paved with cheese".  

  10. # Blogger Marie

    From hubby:
    Tell Kristi she can borrow my humane trap. But they don't work. We have traps that work great - kill the mice instantly, which is humane.

    Also, he recommends the movie Never Cry Wolf for you. (I think I slept through it -- so I can't offer a personal recommendation on this! - M.)  

  11. # Blogger Kristi

    Marie-I am too. I think they thought it was a toy!

    Jenny-LOL That's funny, and that would have been me as well.

    Ramona-The cats were out-of-their-minds excited!

    Christine-I'm glad your visitors seem to have vacated the premises. We bought the single traps last night, filled them with peanut butter, and no far this morning, nothing. Fingers crossed!

    Hopeful-Me too!

    Sher-I'm glad you had good luck with the humane traps. And I hope we don't have a whole family like you did.

    Shannon-Thanks for the tip. I Googled the same thing, and I will be staying far, far away from the attic for awhile. Yikes.

    Karrie-I'm singing that song in my head right now. ;)

    Marie-Really? They don't work? I hope they do. I don't want to kill them!

    I looked up Never Cry Wolf on imdb. It looks like it's right up my alley! My mom has actually done a lot of research on wolves and how they're often demonized as these horrible, predatory creatures, and are actually anything but. Thank Chris for the tip for me!  

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