If you live within a 100 mile radius of me, you had some seriously craptastic weather last night (Monday). It was all high winds, cracking lighting, loud ass thunder, hail and tornado sirens. Not good sleeping conditions. When the storm outside finally stopped at around 2 AM, I fell asleep hoping to get a few hours before waking up to get the kids off to school. At 3 AM, I got a wake up call I did not ask for.
My greyhound, Nova, rarely barks. At 3 AM, she starts barking and of course, I hush her. A few minutes later, my other dog, Kipi, jumps off the bed and both of them barrel into the kitchen. So, I get up to see what is going on. At first, nothing seems amiss, but then, I smell it – pee. And then, I see it – big fluffy tail peeking out from behind the sofa. HOLY CRAP – WHAT THE HELL IS THAT?!
Nova, is not waiting for me to find out and she goes after it. I grab her before she makes whatever it is mad and it starts running everywhere. After both dogs are up and out of the way, I tip toe back into the family room and it looked at me with its beady eyes and ran into the corner. It is huge, and ugly and does not belong! It is a Possum – OMG, OMG, OMG – THERE IS A POSSUM IN MY HOUSE – OMG, OMG, OMG (imagine me, with bed head, in my PJs, jumping up and down on my tip toes and screaming like a little girl).
I run back into my bedroom, slamming the door behind me to regroup. Would it go upstairs to get the girls? Are the doors to their rooms closed? How do you get rid of a possum who is in your house?!
My first thought is to call Kurt (who is in Phoenix) but then I realize he can’t help me and would just be mad because I woke him up. Then, I think about calling my Dad. But, what was HE going to do? None of us are critter catchers! So, I did what any sane person does – I called 911. Yes, ya’ll – I called 911 over a possum in my house. I don’t know if that is technically an emergency but to me it was an emergency! As I staved off hyperventilation, I spoke to the dispatcher:
Dispatcher: “911, what’s your emergency?”
Me: “Um, well, I am not sure if you would consider this an emergency but I am home alone with my kids and there is a huge possum IN MY HOUSE!”
Dispatcher: silence “The possum is inside your house?”
Me: “Yes! And I need it to not be in my house anymore! Can you help me?”
Dispatcher: “Hold on, I will be right back.”
A few minutes pass during which I imagine that possum is either wrecking the first floor of my home or eating my children.
Dispatcher: “Okay, ma’am? I have called Knox County Animal Control and they are going to try to get someone out there tonight.”
Me: “Try? What is this, try?! I cannot have this thing in my house!”
Dispatcher: “They will do the best they can. I will pass along your number.” Click.
There I am – the possum, 2 dogs, 2 kids and me – left to fend for ourselves. I venture back out into the house and run on my tippy toes like a little girl to the garage where I retrieve the biggest flash light I could find. I slowly walk back in and start shining it around to get a better look. It made its way into my newly refurnished office and is underneath one of the desks.
My first thought – if that asshole so much as touches our new furniture, I will kill it!
My second thought – that’s not a possum, that’s a raccoon! And it is huge!
Seriously, the thing is 30-40 pounds. I shine my light on it and it’s eyes light up. Now that I know where it is, I go upstairs to make sure all the bedroom doors were closed and then I barricade myself in my own room. That’s when I start Googling how to get rid of wildlife. I struggle to identify the proper search terms. How exactly does one figure out how to get rid of a huge, smelly, rabies infested mammal in the dead of night with no man around?
After finding NOTHING of any help and about an hour after this episode began, Animal Control calls. I answer and the lady tells me she is leaving her house right then but it will take her 45 minutes to get to me. She also suggests that I shine the flashlight in the raccoon’s face to encourage it to stay put (apparently light sort of paralyzes them). So, I park myself on the floor and shone that light at that massive rodent for upwards of an hour.
Then, the doorbell rings. MY SAVIOR! I let her and her big noose stick in and she goes to work. Her comment is “Damn, that thur is a big ass raccoon”. Like I hadn’t noticed!!! Then she approaches it with the noose, struggles a bit to get it around his neck an zip – she has him! Or, so we both think.
As Captain Obvious previously observed, it is a big ass raccoon and it gets free from her noose the first time she tries to get it out the door. It runs around confused for a minute and then goes back to its spot under the desk. She tries again and this time, gets a better grip on him. She drags him out the front door as it hisses, snarls, scratches and pees (again!). I go straight for the Lysol and paper towels to get that pee right up.
The lady comes back and suggests that in the morning, I clean up everywhere he was with bleach to be sure nobody gets ‘worms’ or anything – WTF?! Worms, dear God! I bid her farewell, cleaned up a little bit more and went and laid down in the bed. Finally – perhaps 45 min of sleep before the alarm goes off.
Just as I pull the covers up, I hear it. Nova, peeing on the rug by the front door. I guess she decided she needed cover up the scent of the raccoon. So, I get up again, drag the now destroyed rug out the front door and all the way to the street in the rain because Tuesdays are garbage days and it may as well go out with the rest of the trash. I lock the dogs in the garage and lay down for 15 minutes. The alarm goes off, I rouse the kids and decide we all need a good breakfast so I scramble some eggs and throw bread in the toaster…when the electricity goes out. HOLY S***! What ELSE can happen this morning?! It’s not even 7 AM!
We eat mostly done eggs and warm, soggy bread in the dark, then I have to jailbreak my car out of the garage to get the kids to school because the garage door won’t open. After drop off, I go buy bleach and spend 2.5 hours sanitizing the downstairs of my house. I was done by 10:00.
So, how was your morning?