We encourage wildlife to visit our backyard, but I do not invite birds, rabbits and squirrels into my home.
Last night I was up late in the spare bedroom writing, yes writing, when I heard scurrying overhead. You know, the scraggling, scraping sound of teeny clawed feet? My first heart-gagging thought was a bat because we’ve had occasional visitors over the last ten years, so I instinctively ducked down while scouring the ceiling for dark wings. But the sleeping cat on the bed paid no attention, so I was pretty sure nothing was flitting around. And my husband swore he’d blocked all the entry routes a bat could take.Satisfied it wasn’t a flying rodent, I sat back and listened, pondering what else it could be. Our home is two stories with a big attic area. I knew better than to wake my husband. By the time I roused him, the creature would hear us and stop rustling. (Yes, I’d been down that path before.)
A week ago my husband informed me with eyes as round as Frisbees he was sure a coyote had sneaked under our back porch. (All I want to know is how these creatures keep gaining access to our allegedly fortified home.) Our dog had gone crazy with the scent and we could only wait until it left sometime during the night. I doubted it had returned and climbed into our attic.
Another possibility came to mind. We’ve had a summer of terrible heat and one ghastly surprise. After several stifling oven-baked days a few weeks ago, I ventured out at dusk and found a birdbath with the basin tipped off and over.
Thinking only squirrels could be so rambunctious in such heat, I wasn’t prepared to see a pillow of fur beneath the heavy concrete bowl. I screamed and dropped it back down. Armed with a long-handled shovel and a flashlight, my husband made a grisly discovery.
A possum had probably been looking for water, tipped the basin and become trapped. And died. A horrible death for any creature. It made us both sick.
Possums could climb. I curled up on the bed next to my cat, listening to the little steps making crazy patterns above the ceiling, waiting for them to stop. Then what? Would it try to gain access to the rest of the house? If I opened the attic door would it be waiting for me? Smiling its little possum smile, ready for revenge?
What is the point of this post? I tried to get some sleep, but tossed and turned all night listening to the intermittent noises, while my husband slept nearby blissfully unaware under the white noise of a fan. I thought I’d spring out of bed early this morning eager to write.
I’m tired and I need to be at work very soon. It’ll be a ten hour day and I’m not sure when I’ll be able to write my five pages. It’s amazing how easy I can find an excuse, isn’t it?
But, thanks to this commitment and WW (see yesterday’s post), I will do it.
Have a great day and I hope there are no creatures in your attic… ~JD here