Before I get into a long ramble about the recent not-so-rambling trip across the country Mickey and I took in order to get to our new home in Bellevue, I’d just like to say: No Dad, the title of this post does not mean I’ve been getting on the radio (KB1EKQ, in case any of you other hams are wondering). :)
That out of the way, on to the rest of the post.
So, when I last posted (August 1st), I was waiting for the movers to arrive, it was pouring, and we were wondering when the power would shut off. Just as I began thinking about posting another entry just that damn bored, the electric company shut off the power (as they said they would, and as we asked them to). Yet another reprieve for you poor folk that I’ve managed to cajol into reading the site.
Since there wasn’t much point in waiting for the movers to pack the electronics (since they could no longer verify that they WORKED), we packed up the stereo and the computers, and waited for a while longer. Finally, the movers arrived (not saying they were late: we just wished they’d gotten there sooner), and in a mere two hours of two guys hauling our stuff down the stairs and into a 53′ tractor trailer, we were on our way.
After having dinner with Chris and Gloria and Eli, Mickey and I spent a pleasant night at Megan’s house (it was damned decent of her to offer a guest bed, if I say so myself), where we got to play with her Jack Russell puppy.
The following day, we jaunted off to Squam, where we spent a fun filled week of swimming in the rain and extricating random critters from the house. It was really great to see everyone one last time before heading out west, and it seemed like everyone had a good time (or so they say, at least).
Honestly, Mickey should really be talking about the critter visitations, but I doubt she’ll post here (she just got a livejournal account, by the way… I’ll link it when she says I can). I say that she should be writing about it because she has far more personal involvement in the whole escapade. But she doesn’t want to post here, so let me tell you about the critters. (“Let me tell you about the chicken.” The Mad Dancers)
We started out the week with spiders. This is nothing out of the ordinary. Just the normal, everyday, gigantic man eating mutant spiders. There were a few lounging on the dock on the first day, and Julie and I managed to knock one into the water with a branch. It proceeded to start doing the breast stroke in to shore, only to have a fish try and eat it. That fish tried THREE TIMES to eat the spider, and each time the spider shrugged and said “What?? I’m swimmin’ here!” thwapped the fish, and kept on heading to the shoreline. These are the same spiders that I’ve run into on many occasions when opening up Squam each spring, and are always a great source of adventure.
That evening, we got a surprise visit by a bat… in the house. Specifically, in the kitchen, where it took great delight in dive-bombing the people currently making dinner in said kitchen. We managed to chase it into the upstairs maid’s quarters, where Megan trapped it and managed to release it safely back into the great outdoors. I like to say that I helped, but mostly I acted as a second set of hands, handing her the basket, handing her something to cover the opening of the basket while she carried it outside, et cetera.
A few days later, Mickey managed to meet a very bold young squirrel that had somehow managed to get into the porch off the master bedroom. She tried to calm it down some and catch it to get it back outside, but it just chittered and stayed up in the rafters. She closed the door to keep it in the porch (and not the rest of the house), and came back 10 minutes later to discover that it had gnawed a hole through the metal screen and escaped. Figuring that was the last of it, she duct taped the hole (being the resourceful girl she is), and related the funny story to me when I got back to Squam that evening. That, as they say, was that.
Only it wasn’t. A day or two later, my father found a very familiar sounding cheeky young squirrel on the kitchen table, trying to get at the fruit bowl. He managed to chase it out the back door, which was slightly ajar. Figuring that was how he got in, he too thought nothing more of it.
Fast forward to the last day, as we are packing up and cleaning the house before departing on our sojourn to our new home. As we are digging our ice packs out of the cooler in the laundry room, I notice something leap from the top of the other refrigerator to the opposite wall, and start clambering around. Investigating, we (Mickey, my father, and myself) discover this self-same bold young squirrel, continuing his exploration of the house. Thus begins the battle. We are three against one, and we come armed with towels and brooms and even a laundry basket, surely enough to either snare the critter or at least shoo him out the door.
We failed to take into account, however, that this was in fact a very resourceful young squirrel that I’m sure had once been bitten by a radioactive spider ala Spiderman. I am sure that he is actually reading this right now and chortling with glee at the recounting of his escapades.
Darting from floor to wall to rafters in one smooth, swift motion, the little squirrel thought he was safe (after all, this had worked before). This time, however, we were armed with dishtowels, which we threw at him to startle him back to the floor, hopefully stunning him long enough to get the basket over him. Instead, he hit the ground running, and after several denied attempts at climbing the walls again, he used Mickey as a climbing post and leapt from Mickey’s arm back into the relative safety of the rafters, leaving some claw marks as he went.
We went round and round like this for a good 10 or 15 minutes, before he finally scurried into the wall behind the refrigerator he had initially jumped from. Grabbing a flashlight, we looked into the wall, and discovered that the damned squirrel had found a way in from the outside. Mickey, thoroughly ticked off at the gashes in her arm, found a board and sealed the space, so hopefully that will be that.
Squam is meant to be a relaxing place (in my opinion, anyway). And it is, for the most part. I suppose one of the things I like most about it though, is that even in the midst of all that relaxing, there can still be little adventures.
I’m looking at the length of this post, and I think I’ll end it here for tonight. Tomorrow, I’ll post about the trip across the country.