---- — First, there was the frog that tried to kill me. Then, when it failed, falling leaves and walnuts tried to do me in. And now, Mother Nature has made another attempt on my life.
It seems I’m just not one with the universe these days. My karma or chi or something else I don’t understand must be off.
I struggle to tell you this story because it’s so upsetting. It’s haunted my dreams since it happened, but I’ll push on with the hope that it might help someone else.
Here goes nothing ...
There was a mouse in my house.
Whew. There, I said it.
It was just after midnight and I was reading in my comfy, overstuffed chair in the living room. I heard something in the kitchen. It sounded like someone was trying to open a bag of potato chips I left on the counter from the staff party I hosted earlier that evening.
I grabbed my phone with sweaty hands before I started to walk toward the kitchen to investigate. I was nervous because there was no mistaking the fact that the bag of chips was being moved. The question was, by who? The thought of “by what” never crossed my mind.
I should have known it was a what because why would someone break into my house just to eat some potato chips? Plain potato chips at that. And generic brand to boot.
I get to the kitchen and careen my neck around the fridge to see what was going on. I didn’t hear anything, so I reached for the light switch to my left.
That’s when it happened.
I saw a small, shadowy figure dart from behind the microwave, race across the sink, dodge the dish drainer and barrel across the stove before disappearing behind it. I disappeared into the living room, running and screaming the entire way, and making a leap for the couch.
Then I did what any self-respecting thirtysomething would do — I called my mommy.
As soon as she answered, I begin frantically screaming, “It’s in the house!” Then I rattled off more questions than she could ever answer: “What do I do? Is there more than one? If so, where are they hiding? How long have they been here? Are they going to kill me?!”
At first she was panicked because I wasn’t making any sense. Screaming rarely equals everything is OK. Then, when she realized I was screaming about a mouse, she laughed. I have never dealt with a mouse in the house and was less than amused by her amusement of me.
After she dubbed my original plan of burning the house down as “irrational,” she reminded me she saw some mouse traps in the basement and that I should set them.
After doing so, she advised me to go back to reading because “clearly you’ll not be sleeping any time soon.”
And was she ever right. The image of that varmint darting across my kitchen counters is in my mind every time I put my feet to the floor — I have not been barefoot in the house since Mousegate 2013.
I picture his lifeless body I found in the trap the next morning every time I go into the kitchen. I spend little time in that room now. (As an aside, this might turn out to be the best diet ever.)
I wonder where his friends are hiding every time I go to bed, checking to be sure they aren’t lurking under the covers.
From this travesty, I fear I might never recover. Mother Nature might have won this time.
Misty Knisely is managing editor of the Pharos-Tribune. She can be reached at 574-732-5155 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her: @PharosMK