This was supposed to be posted days ago. What the hell is going on with WordPress making everything a draft and confusing me? Twice in the last two weeks... Yesterday the building's regularly scheduled exterminator (every third Thursday of the month, lucky for me) came by and dropped poison behind my stove and refrigerator. Apparently, the bait is not that tempting, as a little gray mouse again darted out from under the stove this morning as I stood at the counter cracking eggs. It stopped when it saw me, reversed course, and ran back under the stove. I am fairly certain that in that split second it noticed me, it thought to itself, "Shit. That damn bitch is out there." For the record, I only made a small yelping noise when it startled me.

About five minutes later, as I approached the stove with my frying pan, a little gray mouse again attempted to emerge from its mouse HQ beneath the stove. It also probably cursed me out for foiling its plans and quickly ran back to wherever it came from. I find that funny. What am I going to do? Take an anodized sauce pot and try to smash it as it runs across the floor? Although the thought crossed my mind, I realized that was more like to result in the heavy pot smashing against the floor and cracking the tile and dinging the pot. Even if I somehow managed to connect, did I really want to remove a bloody, mashed mouse carcass from the floor and then wash off the gristle sticking to the pot?

For the sake of simplicity, if only one mouse appears at any given time, her name is Francesca. I'm sure that is more than one, but it is easier to have a collective name unless I am forced to come up with more, which I really, really hope does not happen.

Anyway, although I want Francesca to eat the poison and go away and die* somewhere else, I am also sort of fond of her. I know that she is a filthy, diseased wild rodent, but she is kind of cute. I've always had a soft spot for little furry critter with whiskers. I even once had a pet white mouse for a short time, which I forgot about until Francesca scared the crap out of me yesterday. When I was in London a few weeks ago, one of the free newspapers ran a photo of a teeny brown field mouse climbing on a daffodil. I found it so adorable that I tore it out of the paper and put it in my coat pocket so that I could pull it out whenever I needed a smile. Ironic, isn't it?

*It seems that rodent poison is actually an anti-coagulant. The beasties die when their blood becomes too thin. Interesting, isn't it?