Saturday, February 17, 2007

Mouse in the house. I had thought that was my situation for some time. Most Peace Corps volenteers report one little furry friend at some time or another. Those of us in hot warm climates also get scorpians, and it could be hoped that one problem would take care of the other. Uninvited guests seem the natural by product of living in a mud houses in rural areas. It is not as though I am against mice. I dont mind them really. If it ate the food I provided expressly for its consumption, and was house broken I might find it a good pet. I certainly understand its plight. The winter is not a wonderful time, and my house is much warmer and my provisions better than outside. Im always well stocked on rice, cous-cous, a wide selection of beans, and always have fresh veggies about. Im a good host.

Almost since the day I moved into my own house, Ive been thinking about installing the age old mouse nemisis for some time, but couldnt bear to leave a cat here in Morocco after I left nor did the idea of taking it home seem like a good idea. So the plan never got off the ground.

Tonight, I put on the Traveling Wilburys at what I think is a good volume, but is probally a little loud for both my ears and neighbors. Neither have called up to register a complaint, so I guess Ill keep doing my damage linerialy, one track at a time. Bam! Out of nowhere the mouse flys around the room. When I say nowhere, I think he was hiding near some books piled on the ground next to my speakers. I can see where Bob Dylan could be kinda scary. Add to that Tom Petty, Roy Orbinson, George Harrison, and the guy from ELO and this was like D12 to a Suburban mom.

Knowing that my living room door was shut and locked, this became something like a WWF RAW Cage Battle. One man, one mouse, only one of us would leave by our own 2/4 feet. I had high hopes that it would be me. The fight became heated. Back and forth we went, round and round the room. First to some other books, then around the bed, then the door, and back again to the books. Sometimes my foe would find a hiding spot to catch a breather, but I smoked him out every time. My original plan was to case him into a large bag I have, then take it outside. This was a plan destined for failure, I chalk up the novise mistake to inexperience in pest control.

When I spotted him huddled in a corner, an idea struck me. My Christmas stocking was nearby in a box, the perfect way to grab him and protect my hands at the same time. As a proof of concept, it went well. But, he squirmed out of my grip. I took it to the next step, picking up my heavy leather work/cooking gloves from the floor. The are the perfect tool to catch a mouse, or to punch cattle. 15 more minutes of back and forth action until he was mine, and safely escorted out of the house and into the wild.

Tom and Jerry are HUGE here. I mean giant. You can find T/J VCDs at market, and while I have not done a complete survey they seem to be on TV almost constantly. Great to watch because there are almost no words, and the cross cultural transition smooth. Interestinly, I think Jerry is assumed to be a female mouse. I wont tell Hanna or Barbara.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

I did not think this would be a problem here...but Im always flexable to new situations...

"Last week some earth tremors were experienced in different regions of Morocco, specifically in the provinces of Figuig (Beni Tajjit/Talssint) and Taza. The strongest was of a magnitude of 3.7.
This e-mail is to remind you of some precautions to take in case of earthquakes..."
Safety & Security Coordinator