Sunday, March 1, 2009

Hunca Munca Rides Again*

We still have our Christmas gingerbread house sitting on the buffet in the far corner of the living room.

OK, OK, it's pretty sad looking, I admit. But the "snowman" in the right corner always looked melted like that. And it's not nearly as sad looking as the Christmas tree we kept up till Easter one year - not an artificial tree either. So this sad little gingerbread house stays on the buffet because I don't really want to trash it and it's easy to forget about it most of the time . . . until the scritching-scratching started.

We have, from time to time, especially in the late winter and early spring, mice in our house. (Better, I think, than the snake we once found under the bed.) I started hearing some scratching from that corner of the living room and it seemed to be coming from inside the wall. The lower half of our living room is a funky rock wall. Above the rock, the wall is extended up another 6 feet with wood and drywall. After the recent cold snap, a mouse seemed to be making a nice warm nest where the drywall meets the rock wall, and I was glad that the scratching wasn't coming from the pantry where our last mouse had been nibbling through a bag of pasta and a granola bar.
Last night, as the scratching from the wall was particularly loud, I decided to take a closer listen. Creeping over near the noise I was shocked and delighted to find that it was indeed coming from the wall. But not the drywall . . . the furry little so 'n' so had eaten his own little custom door through the back gingerbread wall and moved on in.

I almost can't bear to set out a mousetrap. It's so . . . fairy tale like! I believe Rumpelstiltskin may be lurking under a bush in my backyard and Rapunzel could be living in my studio. I might even find glass slippers in the back of my closet. I still don't believe in fairies though.

* Thank you to my aunt Saki and cousin Michael for reminding me of Hunca Munca, and The Tale of Two Bad Mice by Beatrix Potter.