Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Be Very Quiet...

We're hunting...

Opossum!

Sunday night we thought someone knocked on the door. That happens like all the time around here, someone knocking and knocking and knocking. It gets as old as it sounds. Anyway, the dog freaks out, which she also does when she's really got to go, big time. So middle son opens the door, the dog shoots out and disappears. She comes around our neighbor's house across the road chasing a critter that we can't really make out what it is. As it falls to the ground in Matt and Sarah's front yard, we then realize she's tracked a opossum. For a moment we thought she killed the opossum. Those things are without a doubt the ugliest varmits on the face of the earth and let tell ya there's many a dog that dreams of playing dead like the opossum. So we drag the dog away from the creature and it stays on the ground for I know 15 minutes after we had all cleared out and went back inside.

Well let's just fast forward to Monday night. Once again the dog is flippin' out. Of course this time I figure it's a pretty brave opossum to venture back up into our territory so I assume that Heidi has to pee like really bad. I open the back door and no sooner does she run out barking than the opossum drops to the ground. This time Heidi ain't playing. She hangs her head so close down to the opossum's face that I expect it at any minute to pop it's head up and bite her on the nose or rip her throat out. I have to go over and pull her away, drag her, both of my feet planted firmly on the ground and yanking her across the yard. This time Petey Opossum gets a clue and hightails it out of there before I can turn around and get a good look at him from the back door.

If I haven't mentioned before, we're like opossum magnets. They love us. A couple of years ago when we lived in another house, we had one living in the house for heaven only knows how long. How can this happen? Well best as we can figure, we had the garage door open one night while grilling out. We didn't shut it very late. Our buddy the opossum must have made himself at home in a nice warm corner of my cluttery garage. We never noticed him. The little guy got pretty brazen. We're pretty sure that one night he was helping himself to some cat food in the kitchen and we thought he was a cat. You see the litter box was in the garage so we kept the door between the garage and the kitchen open so the cats could run back and forth and we didn't have to have a litter box in the house. OK, so let's fast forward to a dark night approximately oh 4:00am. I get up to use the bathroom, for whatever reason I turned on the light, I was reaching for the toilet paper and cowering in the corner behind the toilet was Petey Opossum. I've never been so scared in my life. I'm letting out this moan that can't possibly be coming from a human, the husband says, "Missy, something wrong?" I mean it's 4:00am, I must be sick to be making a noise like that right? I say as softly as I can, "I really think you need to come in here." I'm easing my way away from the toilet, the husband looks in and says, "that's not good." We run out, slam the door and try to figure out how to get that creature out of the bathroom. Believe me there's nothing worse than reaching for some toilet paper and seeing a opossum, his huge ugly teeth and beady eyes looking at you from the corner. YIKES! So we start weighing our options. We may live in Hickville but we don't own a gun. So shooting him out of the bathroom wasn't really in the cards. I suggest duct taping our good carving knife to the end of the broom and pinning him against the wall. Well that wasn't going to work, too much blood and I'd be the one to clean it up anyway. Neither one of us could have killed him anyway. So we go to the garage, grab a fishing net and a cooler. We figure we can get him in the net, flip him in the cooler and drag him through the garage and out of the house. Believe it or not it worked. It was tricky getting him in the net from the corner but once he was in there popping him in the cooler was easy. We very slowly dragged the cooler through the bedroom, the kitchen and into the garage, raised the garage door, slid the cooler across the driveway over to the edge of the woods near our house, did I mention it was 4:00am and we're both in underwear and tshirts? We laid the cooler gently on it's side, popped open the top and ran like hell back into the garage, closing the door as fast as possible, and then started jumping up and down at our victory over the opossum. For a few minutes we knew just how Steve Irwin feels when he picks up that snake or crocodile. We did find the opossum's cubby hole in our garage. He obviously came in on a cold night, made himself or herself at home, ate well and decided not to leave. I guess we're lucky it wasn't a momma with a litter of babies or do opossums only have one baby?

So for whatever reason, the new opossum, he likes it here too. But he ain't getting in the house. Then again the cats can open the back door and it's not unusual to wake up at 3:00am and find the french doors wide open and a cat party going on in the back yard.

On to other topics, last night I managed to finish The Seventh Scroll. Pretty good book. I was up until midnight finishing it and I rarely stay up that late for any reason.

We are now officially hooked on Smallville. We've watched the first three shows of season 1 and are rationing out the episodes or we'll do a marathon. Discipline? Self-control? Won't find that here. The first episode was kind of slow but episodes 2 and 3 were good.

No real stitching news to report today. I started Brittercup's Christmas Kitty from the 2005 JCS Ornament issue but it's all over 1 and slow going.

2 comments:

Anna van Schurman said...

Opossums are a nasty lot. They are so creepy. Once when I was living in L.A.--Los Angeles! the city! right in the city!--there was a dead opossum on our lawn. Since they are notorious for "playing dead," we weren't sure if it was dead or alive, and neither of us wanted to get that close. (I can't imagine finding one when I was on the toilet!) In the end, we got a lesson in getting the city people to come pick up dead animals. They were surprisingly prompt.

You have my sympathy.

Deb S said...

Your story stayed with me this week, too funny! We have opossums under the back porch and I can't imagine having one slip into the house! I understand more than you know--a couple of years ago, I saw something move in a dark corner on a bookshelf in our bedroom. Upon closer inspection, it was the tail of a black snake curled up behind the books. I screamed, ran to get my husband, then ran to the neighbors while he moved it (with barbecue tongs!) into a trash bag and took it outside. We decided it must have come down the chimney as the house is fairly new and the foundation appears seamless. We live in woods, so I should be used to critters, but snakes are my worst phobia....blech!