(For my friends who hate to see rodent tails or hear tales of rodents, stop reading now. You know who you are. I know who you are, and how you react to the mere mention of mice. I'll skip to the last page just for you: the mouse is no longer among us. The end. All is well. Sleep tight.)
Last week, I was hanging curtain rods in our bedroom. (This was during a day packed with work, working out, volunteering at our church, work, pruning oakleaf hydrangeas, work, driving the swim taxi, more work-while-waiting; a late dinner and finally more work before I collapsed. It was one of THOSE days.) So I'm up-and-down the ladder with the level, a pencil, tape measure, drill, drywall anchors, brackets and screwdriver. Trying to make short work of hanging four curtain rods and still have them straight and even and all that before I move on to the next task of the day.
On one of my countless trips up the ladder, I happened to glance over toward the door going to our bathroom and I saw the cat (Luci - which is short for Luci-fur), lolling on the floor, playing with something.
This cat is quite capable of amusing herself with a twist-tie for hours on end, so I didn't give it much thought. Then I looked closer at the object of her....well, we'll call it "affection." My first thought was "mouse." My second thought was, "No, that's not a mouse. You and your monovision contacts are totally misconstruing a harmless piece of cardboard." Then it moved. Without her help. And she jumped back. And I stood still.
I called Swimmer Girl to come do reconnaissance from ground level. Her initial reaction was to discount my fears. "That's not a mouse," said she, reassuringly. But then it moved again. Unaided by the cat, again.
And she - to her credit - calmly confirmed that it WAS a mouse. No shrieking or screeching. No vertical leaps onto tall furniture. The mouse started moving, but slowly - it was injured. Apparently our cat likes to PLAY with her food. She was certainly not keen on killing it; in fact she jumped back every time it moved.
The 12-pound cat is afraid of a 3-ounce mouse. Sigh.
Long story short, we easily captured the walking wounded, and....uhhh, we disposed of it. As soon as it was taken captive, the cat decided she DID want her toy back after all, and was rather miffed at us for taking it away from her. Too little, too late, Luci. You had your chance.
We've found no evidence of mice in the house (except this lone ranger), so I'm going to keep my fingers crossed that it slipped in when we left the door to the garage open for a few minutes earlier that day. Because it's pretty obvious our cat did not inspire the phrase "cat and mouse game."