Monday, December 20, 2004

The Thing under the Fridge

For a few days we've been aware of an unwelcome visitor living in our kitchen, but weren't sure what it was. We noticed an awful smell and piles of Go-Cat seemingly hoarded in little piles behind the kitchen units, but no telltale mousesh*t on the food shelves. My colleague Joan, a bit of a wildlife expert, had 2 suggestions - either a baby hedgehog that the cat had brought in, or a rat. Needless to say, when enlisting Bill's help in moving the fridge, freezer and washing machine, I didn't mention ratticus norwegicus at all!!
First of all we moved the fridge - lots of smelly mousesh*t but no critter. We cleaned meticulously with diluted bleach, then moved on to the cupboard-under-the-sink, again lots of mousesh*t and this time a half-eaten Vileda Supermop head! Everything had to be rinsed and replaced into the clean cupboard.
Next, and most laborious, was the freezer which was at the back of our walk-in larder. Bill had to take all the food off the lower shelves, take the shelves out, then drag the freezer all the way out into the kitchen. This time success!! A huge mouse was cowering in the corner, pretending to be dead (it fooled Bill but not me!).
I reached for the critter (carefully armed with leather gardening gloves and a plastic bag) but it immediately darted under the fridge.
Bill thought to block it's next escape (into the washing machine) with the food shelves but it squeezed itself underneath said appliance. Time to move the washing machine again! But next time it wasn't so canny and tried to jump up the wall (climbing obviously not a strong point with that fella). I reached out and grabbed it, quickly enclosing it in the bag much as you'd pick up a dog poo.
I won't tell you what I did with the mouse then. Let's just say it won't be back to stink out my kitchen again...

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