Thursday, October 28, 2010

My Real Life House of Horrors

Hatfield came downstairs this morning in tears.

"Mom, there's something making a scary noise in my room," she sobbed.


I followed her upstairs. "Sweetie, if you can't handle a scary noise in your room, maybe you aren't ready to go to Terror on the Fox with your dance team," I lightly admonished, fully expecting to find some toy acting all wonky because it's low on batteries to be hidden under the dark recesses of their bunk beds.

"Mom, a haunted house is fake. This is REAL LIFE!" she quickly wailed.

Irritated, I stepped into the girls' room. I could only hear the tick-tock of the obnoxious pig clock she was gifted at our last White Elephant Christmas exchange.

Then I heard it.

Scratch. Scratch. Scratch.


By this time I was head to toe goosebumps.

Scratch. Scratch. Scratch.

HkHkHkeeeeeeeee...........( a more guttural hissing sound
. Like a PISSED OFF wild rabid rodent sound.)


Nearly crying, I turned to Hatfield. "OH MY GOD! There's something IN there!" Horrified, I pointed to the long cold air return duct located conveniently above her top-bunk pillow.


"I know! I heard it the past two nights, but last night it started making all those scary hissing sounds," she wailed.


I call the Mister. Voicemail. Figures.

I text the Mister. In BIG CAPITAL LETTERS, so he knows I mean business:
There's a freaking animal trapped in the girl's air duct.
Do Something Now!!!

An hour later, he calls me.

I hate island time.

In the meanwhile, I take the kids to the library because:
1) it's our usual Thursday morning storytime;
2) the boys have two days off due to teacher's convention, and I was already feeling a bit batty and
3) because there's a freaking wild animal trapped in my house and NO WAY am I staying in a house with potentially rabid rodents.

If you have been reading my blog for a while, you know all about my completely irrational, over-the-top, need-to-be-medicated-at-the-mere-mention fear of rodents. Over the years, I've been traumatized by run-ins with chipmunks, opossums and squirrels. My poor nerves cannot handle anything else.

While at the library, the Mister comes home, and I'm not quite sure what he does except he confirms via text: "Yep, there's something in there. Couldn't get a look at it."

Yeah, he's a keeper, I know.

So all this afternoon I have been calling people around town. NO ONE has been able to help so far. Here is what I have learned:

* The police and Animal Control will do jack sh*t about this type of problem.

* "Pest Control" and "Pest Solutions" are synonymous with "We only deal with bugs. Maybe mice. Nothing bigger."


* Look up "Wildlife Nuisance Control" and your county on the Internet. That will get you the help you need.

Can I just add that people who work in this line of business aren't the friendliest sort of folk?

So I look it up. The first call I make, Too-Few-Brain-Cell Troy answers. After listening to my explanation of the problem, he tells me: "Listen, I'm on vacation out of state, but you sound like a nice lady, so I'll tell you what to do, free, over the phone. It's probably a bird, but maybe a squirrel. Either way, you should open the vent, get a BIG fishing net, and have the critter jump in there."

Ahhhhh, not gonna happen.

So I call the next guy, who has a professional looking website. He tells me that I should get a mirror and the flashlight, open the vent and look around to see what we're dealing with first.

"Yeah, well, I'm not really the sort of person who would do something like that," I explain to him.

He proceeds to go on and on, how it's best to know what we are dealing with (while listing off a long list of possibilities, all of which make me want to pass out) before I pay big bucks to have him come out here.

"Ummm, are my completely manic hysterics somehow lost on you?!? No way in h*ll am I ever going to:

* remove that air duct cover
* climb on my roof
* scrounge through my attic
* or freaking bang on the heating ductwork in the basement to see if anything moves.

I don't care if you charge me a thousand dollars, get over here and get this freaking thing OUT OF MY HOUSE!!!"

In the end, we agree that my husband will come home, assess the problem, and call him back (so he wouldn't have to deal with the "hysterical wife", I'm sure)

What a complete f*cker.
(the wildlife removal guy, not the Mister.)

But, it's the f*cker I want to come to my home to get rid of this problem.

To be continued . . .
(and this story damn well better have a happy ending!)


geralyn said...

I feel all creepy-crawly just reading about it. Total gross out! So have you resolved it yet? I recommend moving into a hotel until said wildlife is permanetly relocated!

For what it's worth, I once had a mouse...a huge freaking, mutant my dryer vent tube and I could hear that thing running around a scratching. My big, brave man (cough) told me to pull the dryer out, unscrew the tube, firmly holding both ends together and toss it out the back door. Yeah right!! After a fifth of Jim Beam maybe. The scrawny little neighbor dude-farmer guy came over and kind of girlyish..tossed it out my back door. Marc came home and acted like it was no big deal.

Good luck and keep your running shoes on!!

Joy said...

We had raccoon issues twice in our attic, before fixing up some soffit gaps on our old house. Bittersweet endings, in both cases. The first wildlife removal guy set a trap for momma racoon (then the plan was for babies to join her - we found out about them after a baby fell down our wall, and had to be cut out of the wall - little guy's eyes weren't even open). But...momma never came back - possibly too much disruption had happened. So...we had to find an "unofficial" wildlife rescue person to take babies (after we fed them for a day or two with elecrolytes and an eye dropper). So, sort of happy ending. Hope momma was ok & recovered from the loss of her little ones. Then, a couple of years later we had more. Found out because the little guys started roaming (they were older than the first batch), because their momma had gone MIA. They could get out of the attic, make their way to the ground, and then were stuck - no food, no way up...not safe. So we actually started putting them back on the roof, feeding them cat food, and waited until they left. We know at least one was hit by a car in front of our house. Another hung around pretty closely for a while, looking hungry and skinny. Hope he did ok, but not sure. Anyway...hope you find someone who will actually resolve the issue, effectively and humanely. Will all be over soon, I expect :)

Anonymous said...

To quote Bill Murray, a famous Ghostbuster,

we came,
we saw,
we kicked its *donkey*

I'm feeling quite macho. Excuse me while I sit down for a dinner of scotch and waffles in my hottub.
(all in jest, of course!)

Mr. Can't-even-begin-to-explain-what-happened

Amy said...

So, did you see my recent squirrel in the sink drain post? We also have flying squirrels in the attic, or the "depot" as J calls it. Hope this story has a happy ending too. Can't wait to hear it though.