Thursday, February 6, 2014

Of Mice (or Bats?) and Men

There's an animal somewhere in our walls. It doesn't seem to be able to get into the house, but we can hear little clawed feet at night and it's creeping me out. I suppose one should expect this sort of thing in a 172-year-old house in a bad winter, but that doesn't mean we have to live with it. So, I called Gary, an expert on unwelcome wildlife. He brought his ladder and very carefully, very skillfully, climbed up in the narrow space between our house and the next, and caulked the only opening he could find and attached a one-way exit bag. He's grinning in the first shot, so entertained was he by his ridiculously precarious position. Good to have a sense of humour, I guess.

There's a good chance it's bats, since we don't hear noises every night and there've been no incursions into the house. In the meantime, I've been sleeping on the futon in the library, where I can't hear anything except the ploughs going by at 3 a.m.
And on the subject of ploughs, for those of you who don't live in a place with massive quantities of snow on a regular basis, here's how we manage to carry on (having lived for 16 years in Washington, DC, where even the suggestion of snow sets off mass hysteria, I know what it's like to live in a place that's unprepared to cope). First, we have rules about parking. No overnight parking on the street between December and the end of March. If you don't have a driveway (and we don't), you have to rent space nearby, for at least those four months of the year. The bonus is that if you're paying for parking space, then you're also paying for someone else to clear the snow from around your vehicle. Not a bad thing. The reason we have parking restrictions is because most of the ploughing is done at night when the roads are free of vehicles, and the sidewalks are free of people. Yes, we have sidewalk ploughs, something unheard of farther south. Here's the nice job the snow elves did last night while we were tucked into our beds.

Looking up the street from our front door.
Looking down toward the lake from our front door.
My shawl is progessing, but not enough for any sort of dramatic photos. It still looks like a rumpled heap of grey nothingness.
To keep my spirits up, I'm planning a new design for Shelridge's W4.

Just looking at all this colour in early February has to be therapeutic for the winter soul. That's a good thing because apparently, we're under yet another snow squall watch.