Thursday, May 29, 2008

Snakes, Squirrels, Mystery Rodents OH MY!

My family apparently attracts interesting animals. Besides the stray cats we've adopted, the zebra finches and the plethora of other pets we continuously acquire, there are other animals around our house that most people will never see in their life. Let me explain...

Yesterday, I was being all studious and working on a perfectly procrastinated-til-the-last-minute paper when I heard strange noises coming from outside my window. Imagine the sound of a sword hitting a tree repeatedly...anyway, I look out my window and right below me Chad is attacking the ground with a shovel. Not too weird-except the "ground" was moving. Yeah, it wasn't dirt, it was a snake. Not just any snake, a copperhead! As in poisonous! And it wasn't just one, there were three! THREE! So, as you may imagine, being the hater of all things legless I had a mini freak-out moment. After that I just let my brothers be all manly and kill the nest of slitherers. How many people can say that a nest of copperheads made residence in the garden next to their house? I wish I couldn't say that....eww.

But anyway, this reminded me of an instance a few months ago in the winter when another critter happened to call our house home.

It happened that Mom was working and she usually doesn't get home til late so I make sure that Caleb gets to bed on time and Dad doesn't fall asleep on the couch. Around 11:30 pm I decided to get ready for bed. I pass Caleb's room and see that his light is still on, which was weird because he was supposed to have been asleep two hours ago. I stick my head into his room and I see him huddled in a corner of his bed, all of his lights are on, and he is tightly clutching Hershey (our dog) who is scratching frantically trying to escape. Immediately I tell him in a good, big sister manner that he'd better get his butt into bed and go to sleep before mom gets home. But I happen to notice that he's crying so I ask what the matter is. He looks at me and whispers, "There's a squirrel in my closet!"
Alright, at first I didn't believe him (caleb does sleep talk sometimes and gets slightly delusional when he's tired) but he was crying so I told him that I'd check. His closet isn't really a closet, it's more like a space on the wall in between his room and Chad's. I looked around and didn't see anything so I told Caleb there wasn't anything there. But he animatedly tells me that it fell on him while he was sleeping and ran into the closet (I don't blame him for crying). In order to soothe his dream confused mind, I told him to take Hershey and go to Mom and Dad's room. Meanwhile, I drag Dad out of bed and tell him to get a flashlight and a bucket, just in case there really is something in there. Dad comes back is wearing a huge pair of yellow ski gloves (apparently he has more faith in what his children say). He starts to shuffle some stuff around under the table, looking completely ridiculous I might add. I was nonchalantly peering over his shoulder, giving moral support when all of a sudden I was attacked! A quick flash of brown whizzed by my face, landed on my shoulder and sailed over to Caleb's bed. I shrieked and fell backwards into his laundry hamper. After untangling myself from his dirty socks, I managed to get a glimpse of the furry fellow. It was not just a squirrel. It was a flying squirrel! You know, those squirrels that are small with large flaps of skin along their sides that they use to glide around? I was pretty convinced until then that they resided in the boonies of Australia.
So anyway, we're trying all sorts of tactics to get the poor thing in a bucket. That little guy was probably scared out of his mind, they're really cute actually (when not attacking your shoulder). They're about the size of a large hamster with a small, bushy tail and huge black eyes. They're also fast. Really fast. We tried everything to get him into the bucket, but Otis (that's our name for him) outsmarted us every time.
Eventually we cornered him under the bed, but that's no help. If you've ever seen under Caleb's bed...well, let's put it this way...if you shrink a bachelor pad down, send a ravenous beast through it and then conjure up two tornadoes and an earthquake, that's getting pretty close to what his under-bed-world looks like. By this time, mom was home and wondering what in the world we were doing, she tried to help us, but then we knew that there was no way to catch Otis under that bed.
To make a long story short, we ended up closing Caleb's doors and opening his window, then we turned all the lights off and Caleb slept in the parent's room. We all learned something that night. #1. Flying squirrels don't just live in Australia, and #2. If a family member complains of swooping rodents falling on them in the might be a good idea to believe them.

So I'm off to encounter other strange animals (hopefully not the legless ones!). On saturday I'm waking up at the literal crack of dawn and truckin down to the Outer Banks, NC with my WHOLE family. Can't wait! We all decided to sell one of our kidneys to pay for the gas : ). Then thursday I'll be driving back early with a friend and we're packing up for PERU! So I'm going on a three week hiatus for now. Ciao! (or should I say Adios?)

1 comment:

Cassie said...

Hey, I like your blog! My name is Cassie. my blog is
Cassia-piecesofmyheart if you want to see it.bye!