Saturday, July 19, 2008

Squirrel Catch, Take 2

OH FOR THE LOVE OF PETE.
Bushy was captured. Her Stupid Little Squirrel Babies or boyfriend or whoever she has shacking up in the roof with her are still here.
Last night, they were rather disappointed that their fearless leader went missing, so they spent the entire night tormenting me with running up and down the walls and running the length of the house. And if that wasn't bad enough, right before I dozed off, I heard the most dreaded noise: scratching INSIDE the house, not the walls. I flipped the lights on, rushed to the scene of the crime (which involved standing on my dresser, since the scratching was coming from on top of a closet in my bedroom) and while I didn't discover the the little critter, I DID discover the little critter's NEST. IN THE HOUSE.
Oh no, no, no, no, no, no, no.
I love wildlife. Outside. Where it belongs.

So... another call to the landlord. You know, usually I am nice and don't say mean things on my blog (you never know who will stumble upon your writings), but enough is enough.
They came back and set the stupid squirrel trap back up and sealed off the visible squirrel entries to the house. And when I asked about the INDOOR varmint, um... the wife portion even kind of chucked as she told me I could get some mouse traps, as it was probably a vole.

First, I don't care what kind of critter it is. I want it out of my bedroom. Strike that. I want it out of my house. The varmint is lucky I don't ask it to leave Alaska.
Second, I don't own this house. Varmint trapping is not my job.
Third, I am done being nice. They asked me not to kill Bushy. They didn't say anything about the rest of the critters that come through the yard (and, um, the HOUSE.)
Fourth, it is probably not a wise idea to chuckle at a southern girl when she asks you to remove mice, vole, or squirrel from the home. It's good way to ensure buck shot holes in your walls, since 30-ought buck shot is MY idea of a better mouse trap.

In all seriousness, folks, I just CAN'T coexist with vermin IN the house. I can't. I have this "insane" need to know that I am the only one munching on my raisin bran crunch, or snacking on my homemade sourdough bread in the middle of the night. I know, I know, call me crazy, but life without vermin is just one of my basic needs.

***
I'd like to add that I actually paused in the middle of my vermin story to go investigate a strange noise outside. Bushy has found her way back down here. I know it's her, because she has a distinctive tail injury that causes her tail to look like a feather plume. And she's back because when the landlord covered up the entry holes, um, he sealed at least one of Bushy's roommates inside.
Oh little bunny huggers, don't worry. Over the last few months I witnessed Bushy and her roommates stockpile enough food in the roof that I am SURE they will live long enough to eat their way into the house.
Meanwhile, Bushy is frantically calling to her babies who are frantically calling back. And when they both get riled up and frantic, they begin some crazy squirrel jumping ritual that sounds like someone pelting my house with rocks. Bushy is frantically trying to break into the house, the babies are frantically trying to break out. It's a vicious cycle that is driving me crazy, and will cause me to start launching grenades into the roof if those Stupid Squirrels wake up my precious baby who is FINALLY asleep.

****

My husband had to listen to the unedited version of this story, complete with LOTS of words that would likely get me banned from blog spot. He has promised me (I made him swear on our marriage vows and his left, um... arm) that he will take me to Walmart and JoAnn Fabrics on Monday.
"HUH?" You may ask? Let me explain. Walmart for the vermin rifle, JoAnn Fabric for whatever gauge needle and thread I need to turn Bushy and her mates into lovely coin purses for all my friends back home who want "Alaskan Made" gifts for Christmas.
***

The rest of my day was nearly lovely. Beans and I headed to the Farmer's Market in Fairbanks to check out the scene there. I brought home some rhubarb (J loves the stuff), some goat milk soap that is scented with Alaskan Spruce (ahhh... perpetually Christmas!), and after talking to a local about the benefits of fresh ground wheat versus the stuff you buy in bags at the store, I bought a bag of wheat that was milled right in front of my very eyes, as well as some whole wheat berries (the kernels that get ground up for flour) to "grind" myself in my food processor.
I would have bought even more fresh vegetables, but as we were planning on staying in town for some time, I decided I would drag J back there later this week.
I did take time to check out all the other vendors. A lot of homemade crafts and artwork. I've decided I could totally sell my stuff at the Farmer's Market, and it may be a good place to head with all the things I create over the winter.
One last stop at the Delta Meats booth for a Buffalo Hot Dog and a lemonade, and Beans and I went back to the van to nurse and wait for Susan.

We followed Susan to the other side of town and then walked down to the river. After stopping for a pretzel (compliments of Susan- thank you!), we sat on the bridge and chatted, then meandered down to the river side to get a better look at the Rubber Duckies. With a few minutes to spare before the race began, we sat on a log and watched Beans eat dirt and river rocks. Susan snapped a few pictures of my little Muddy Miss. Poor Beans had about reached her limit of playtime by the time the first little ducks headed down the river. This topped her tantrums for about 2.5 seconds (OK, maybe a little longer) and she waved and cheered to the duckies for a few moments before she made herself perfectly clear that she wanted to go home. I snapped a few pictures of the ducks before we packed up and headed out.
What I had to say about the ducks: Absolutely stinkin' CUTE. You see one little yellow speck turn the bend, then another, followed by hundreds of little yellow ducks, bobbing in the current. There was an apparent front-runner, beelining for the finish, the pack, and then a few stragglers, poor unlucky little ducks that looked as if they were taking on water and beginning to sink. VERY cute to watch the children throwing rocks or trying to splash the stragglers back into the current (against the "rules" to touch the ducks!). I wish we could have stayed longer. I wish Beans had been a little more cooperative, but we weren't that lucky.
At least she dozed on the way home, and I drove around in circles a few times before getting home to the Squirrel Debacle, letting her rest.

MOOSE ALERT: On my way back into North Pole, right on the edge of town (for locals, right on the corner of Airway and Badger), a moose in the ditch, munching on trees, her baby laying peacefully in the grass next to her, taking a nap. So sweet!

****

I had a great time in town today, and had great company. I have invited Susan out for another walk this coming week, and hope we have some good weather and can talk her into showing me another nice place to "sight see" and walk.

I am looking forward to a "day of rest" tomorrow, though! I'm hoping Beans will feel like power napping her way through teething (looks like a few on the top are trying to come in all at once). I think we are going to play hooky from church and spend the day at home. We'll get the house cleaned up, the laundry caught up, and play blocks and read stories, and all the stuff she really likes to do. (For the record, Beans LOVES doing laundry! She tries to put everyone's clothes on, and looks especially precious playing "peek" with dada's boxer briefs on her head.)
I'll read library books during naps (or maybe even take a nap myself!), maybe crochet a bit or sew. Whatever I do, it's going to be fun and relaxing, and not involve leaving the house, unless we have to go to the dump, and then I'll allow for some treasure hunting.

****

This coming week, watch for a squirrel update. No idea what kind of rifle we are going to get. No idea how to shoot it. But I'm gonna learn, and I'm gonna learn fast. Then I'm going to dress up like Annie Oakley and shoot me some squirrel.

The rest of the weekly forecast:

- Looking forward to reconnecting with my friend, M, and her little ones. Between her in-laws being in town and me running all over the place this week, I've really missed her company!
- Dragging J to Creamer's Field in Fairbanks. It's a local wildlife watching spot (mostly birds) with a good walking trail. We'll be suiting up, rain or shine, packing Beans into the backpack, and taking a little trek.
- As mentioned before, hopefully another trek with Susan. We've got lots more wildlife to see, wildflowers to identify, and pictures to take. And walking with her makes me so much LESS afraid of the wildlife.

Until my next entry, Happy Moose Trails. Meanwhile, I am going outside to build a better slingshot and get some target practice.

2 comments:

Susan Stevenson said...

You probably do have a vole in the house, if it isn't those squirrel babies. I don't think I'd be happy having vermin in my house either - unless they stayed in the walls and attic and didn't come into my dwelling area. I just imagine little rodent footprints on the countertop. Yuk.

We're heading down to the Red Green Regatta, even though it looks like rain is in the forecast. I hope you have an enjoyable Sunday, and Ms. Beans isn't suffering so bad with her toofies.

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