• Squirrel Hunting

    Date: 2013.01.16 | Category: Home, Mark, Weirdness | Tags:

    We get like five mornings/evenings below freezing in Louisiana. Two of those have happened this past week.  One of those nights we were in our living room, when we heard an awful scratching sound coming from the top corner of the room. Mark went outside and made sure that we didn’t have a low hanging tree branch – nothing. The scratching continued and we figured a critter had taken shelter in our home. Eventually the scratching stopped though and I forgot about it… until last night.

    As Mark and I both finished with a late night of work, we crawled into bed around 11, ready to for some much needed shut eye.

    We laid down, listening to the light pattering of sleet hitting the roof, when suddenly we heard the familiar SCRATCH SCRATCH coming from the general direction of our closet. Mark and I looked at each other.

    “No way that’s a tree branch, huh?” I said.

    Mark replied, “No that’s definitely a squirrel. I hope he’s not digging his way through the sheetrock.”

    At which point I had visions of the following:

    • The squirrel bursting through the sheetrock as if propelled by a spring and landing on the bed.

    • The squirrel busting through the sheetrock and then quietly climbing up the bed and me waking up with him sitting on my chest.

    • The squirrel bursting through the sheetrock followed by a contingent of two barking dogs and two angry cats, tearing up my house and waking up Sarah.

    Our first option was to try to scare the squirrel away. This involved Mark shouting and banging on walls, Leela barking and me throwing my boots at the ceiling of my closet. All of these things stopped the noise just long enough for us to settle back in bed and hear the scratching start all over again.

    The scratching was loud though and the thought of waking up with that critter on my chest was enough to entice us to take the next step.

    Mark has been working on replacing the eves of our house, so there is an open spot by our fireplace. We can see it from our backdoor, so he stationed me there with a flashlight to watch while he crawled into the attic in an attempt to flush the squirrel out.

    Now, I could see the spot by the fireplace from inside the house, but it was killing my back to look at that angle. I opened the door to get a better look, but it was sleeting and the thought of there being no barrier between me and a scared squirrel flying out of a hole was enough to make me stretch and bare it.

    While I was waiting, I suddenly heard Mark’s murmured voice up in the attic, words coming in quick succession. I kept waiting and peering, but no squirrel. So I went to the attic opening to find out what was going on.

    In my mind, I just knew we were about to have one of two Clark Griswold situations happen: Mark was either going to fall through the attic and have his legs sticking through our ceiling, or the squirrel was going to come flying out of our recently packed away Christmas tree and land on his face.

    As Mark and I hollered back and forth through the attic door, I found out that he had spied our furry little friend, but the squirrel freaked and ran out of the attic back into a remote corner, into the eves of our house… in the exact opposite direction we thought he was coming in through.  But, he hadn’t reappeared, so we both gave up and went back to bed.

    The good news is that the scratching stopped after that. The bad news is that we obviously have another hole in our roof somewhere and a squirrel who knows how to make good use of it.

    Much to the credit of our southern friends, I’ve had a couple offer up their squirrel traps for our use (yes, people here obviously keep them stocked in their homes), but despite being the well bred southern girl that I am and the fear of that squirrel breaking into my bedroom in the middle of the night, I don’t want to kill him. He just wants a warm place to sleep after all. I’m just going to hope the sight of Mark ambling after him in the attic in the middle of the night was enough to scare him away permanently.