So tonight I saw the critter that’s moved into the garage in Pooh Bear’s absence … and it’s not a mouse.
It’s a roof rat.
I was in the garage feeding the cat, got a strange feeling of being watched, opened the cabinet door, and there it was, staring at me. If I were the sort of person who could kill a rat by, say, whacking it with a shoe, I could have done it; the little guy stuck around for several seconds, perhaps hoping I would close the door so it could go back to eating sugar out of the bag, or perhaps simply to wired up to realize it had been busted. (Sugar high! Whee!) I spent a half-hour cleaning all edible material out of the pantries in the garage, except for one oatmeal pouch, which my wife suggested leaving behind so the rat wouldn’t destroy anything looking for more food.
Did I mention that my wife isn’t quite typical when it comes to creepy-crawlies? She used to have a pet rat named Tara (which is of course “a rat” spelled backwards), and years ago we had a pet hooded fancy rat named Feathers. Anyway, when I told my wife I had seen a rat in the garage, her first question was: “Is it cute?” And when I told her I found a couple of oatmeal pouches that the rat had taken as a snack back to its lair, which I found inside an old inflatable mattress (don’t worry, visitors, it’s not the mattress we use for guests), she thought that was cute too: “Oh, I’ll just take these home and eat them later.”
Well, yes, it is kind of cute. But it’s still a rat.