17 November 2004

It was about 10 minutes after I last updated my blog that I saw it. I was so terrified that I ended up sitting frozen at my desk for about an hour and three quarters.

What was it I saw? Saw? No. Though I want to, but I think it's vanished from all the cinemas near me now. When posters started springing up all over West Hampstead advertising the film simply saying "Dare you see saw?" I thought that it was some kind of juvenile challenge and that the playground had gotten nasty. Of course, having bones that tended to break when I did things like eating my dinner, I never did dare see-saw as a child. The challenge offered by these posters made me wonder what I may have been missing out on. Until I realised they were talking about a film.

So, what was it I saw on Sunday then that had me incapacitated with fear?

A mouse sitting on top of my fridge.

Apparently, not only is there a hole at the back of my kitchen cupboard giving them access up from beneath the floorboards... they can also get out of the cupboard via a hole in the side of the cupboard, leading them to a nice landing perch - the fridge.

Maybe it could smell the fact that my fridge currently contains 7 different types of cheese (hey - I'm a vegetarian. I need to get my protein from somewhere), and was on a mission to break in?

A couple of weeks ago, I reported the mice to my housing caseworker at the council. He reported it to the landlord's agent who accordingly sent their handyman round (who had been round before the call from the council but just did bugger all and left). He laid a "glue trap" by the hole at the back of my kitchen cupboard.

If you've never seen one of these 'traps' before - they look like oversized self-adhesive surgical dressings, and I guess work on the hypothetical prinicpal that they're fly paper for mice. I just had visions of a mouse running round underneath the floorboards looking like he'd just gotten in from A&E (or the ER for any American-English speaking readers). I however couldn't for a second envisage it actually "trapping" anything.

On Monday I called the landlord's agents again saying "There's still mice! I saw one yesterday!", so this morning I was again woken by a tattooed man clutching more of these dressings. He opened my cupboard to see if anything was trapped in the, well, 'trap', and...

"The trap's gone!" He exclaimed with a certain amount of surprise.

"Oh?" I said far more calmly, knowing immediately that my vision had come true, and a mouse was somewhere under my floor alive and running round, but with a sheet of sticky stuff covering his back and thus mildly impairing his movement.

The handyman laid another trap. If that one goes too, then it shall be certain that one of my rodent room-mates has an entrepreneurial flair, and has decided to launch his own rodent back-waxing business. I can understand it, I mean, would you want to shag someone with a back *that* hairy?

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