“I really should be grateful.” That’s what I tell myself while vacuuming out the car. Just imagine if I’d found them while driving?
For a month, I’ve put off getting the car’s ventilation ‘freshened’ because cost-saving measures come before buying perfume for my car. But then something got sucked up and blocked the heater vents. That moved cleaning the system to the top of the list!
Afterward, I decided to get the car washed and avail myself of the free vacuum stations outside. I’m regretting not making a pit stop at the bathroom before I came here, so I hurry to suck up the month’s worth of detritus. (Anyone doubting I had a child would be convinced by the loose crayons, left-over Halloween candy and broken bits mashed into the carpets and fused into the seat crevices. )
The hose inhales pen caps, receipts, and other miscellany from the trunk when, suddenly, I need to find the ladies’ room. Like, NOW! I dash through the automobiles inching their way up to the car wash entrance and stumble through the small office door. Fog immediately settles on my lenses.
Fun Fact: Cold glass + Warm Air = Temporary Blindness
I believe I shriek “Bathroom?” at an attendant before hurtling myself toward the facilities. I manage to take the urgent call from Mother Nature in time. (That woman has no respect for dignity!) Refreshed and relieved, I go back to battling the dirt in the car.
It’s as I’m finishing up the front passenger area that I notice the box of food I’d left there the day before seems to be disturbed. There’s a hole…no two…in the bag of dried Pinto beans. I shrug this off, because I do not watch horror movies and can’t recognize a clue when I trip over one.
I’ve sucked up about fifty-billion pieces of small plastic and wrappers torn all to hell and this doesn’t strike me as odd because my teenager is unaccustomed to restraint and ripping paper and eating candy is more than a pastime for him–it is a compulsion. One vice feeds the other.
When I jerk the backseat forward, I find it. The very obvious nest that some creepy crawly has been tricking out with old tissues and the remains of my son’s efforts at candy-coated papier-mâché. I now recognize what I’m facing: cleaning up after a slovenly child, industrious mice, all while hampered by my own laziness. A total triple-threat.
Gamely, I stick the vacuum nozzle into the space. I suck up many layers of mouse-related stuffs all the while waiting for the furry homeowners to make an appearance. The first time I suck up something heavy, I nearly shriek, drop the hose, leaving my car, and running for non-existent Michigan hills. It turns out to be a cloth shopping bag handle. I have to reach in and retrieve it myself because it is hooked up underneath something.
The entire time, it’s like there is mounting horror music playing in my head. I’m waiting and waiting for something to leap out and bite me. But, like an M. Night Shyamalan movie, the ending is pretty anti-climatic. I finish my business with no sign of the hairy monsters I spent an hour chasing with a hose. (#ISeeFuzzyPeople)
Even though I cleaned for an hour, I never saw hide nor whisker of the beady-eyed ones. But, I’m going to feel them watching me whenever I drive now. Oh yes, the mousy-ones are unforgiving bastards and they come back and get you in the sequel.
Getting home, I’m confronted by the sight of squirrels chowing down on bird seed despite my efforts at squirrel-proofing the feeders.
(I was briefly heartened when I discovered WD-40 created a greasy slide that made the critters look like particularly inept pole dancers. They’d fling themselves up there only to slide down with a look of surprise on their tiny rodent faces. I laughed and laughed. But, two days later, apparently they’ve absorbed the oil and are perching, unrepentant, on the rim of the brass feeder. )
Twice now, I’ve been bested by creatures not possessing two college degrees and opposable thumbs.
Sadly, the bird feeder that does actually work to keep the squirrels out…also keeps the birds out. Maybe they don’t like the color red? Or maybe the fact that I put only giant sunflower seeds in that barely fit through the feed trough holes might have something to do with it.
And lastly, I’ve been determined to figure out what has been blocking the lazy-susan in the kitchen from making its rounds. (And, no, my name is NOT Susan!) So I unload the entire contents except for two containers of oatmeal. Apparently, they are what is now holding up the upper level of the round-a-bout. And I have neither the tools nor that aptitude to fix this problem. Sigh. *Bangs head softly against the wall.*
So, as problems go, these are pretty banal ones to have. I guess life has gotten back to ‘normal.’
But, If anyone wants to come over and fix any of the things that are wrong with me, feel free to stop on by. I’ll have plenty of beans ready to serve…only partly pre-chewed.