Filed Under (General) by Rob on 06-01-2008

…and all through the house, not a creature was moving; not even…

“Hey, what’s that noise?”
“Don’t know – it’s coming from our bedroom”
“Look! Over there! A mouse!”

I shut all the doors fast and grabs a plastic bowl. Mousy is hiding in a small gap at the back of our bed, but as we have a water bed, it’s impossible to move it to look. Instead, I shine the torch into the gap and wiggle it around noisily. Sure enough, the mouse flies out the other end at great speed and is climbing up the curtains, almost to head height. I try to catch it, then it jumps off and zooms into a plastic bag with material in it. I seize my chance and grab the neck of the bag and throw it out of the window. The mouse leaves the bag and runs off, in time for us to go out to a friend’s house for the Christmas Eve festivities.

This is by no means the first mouse we’ve had in our house – if you put ‘mouse’ into the ‘search’ box above, you’ll find at least two other occasions. However, in the past 3 weeks, we’ve had no fewer than seven sightings, and I’ve caught the wee blighter about three. The most recent time was Friday night (actually early Saturday morning), when we woke to find it on the window sill in our room. I confess that enough’s enough and I have now invested in some rat poison (apologies to lovers of little furry beasts, but the health risks from such an infestation are by no means insignificant).


Most Africans would stamp on a mouse as soon as look at it. One time, a huge one scuttled into the airport arrivals lounge in Cotonou and dozens of folk were stamping wildly in it’s general direction. The poor thing didn’t make it out alive, but someone obligingly picked up it’s frail rodent corpse and disposed of it. I couldn’t splat a mouse myself, I’m afraid (hence the poison). However, when I caught my second or third mouse of the month, I took it out to the guard outside and said “I’ve caught a mouse, what d’you think I should do with it?” hoping he’d say, “I’ll exterminate him for you.” Instead, we had the one African bloke in about 10,000 who fears such things: “I don’t like killing mice – just take him down the road and let him go.” Just our luck to get the only wimpy African guy I know! I’d let mice out down the road before and the mouse had returned, but in the absence of any viable alternative I did it again and (you’ve guessed it) he returned!

Do you have any good mouse stories? Leave a comment if so (or even if not!)

5 Comments posted on "It was the night before Christmas…"
Hugo van Tilborg on January 6th, 2008 at 2:21 pm #

an african guard that’s too squeamish to kill a mouse… I’d start wondering about the security 🙂

Happy new year from cold Holland (the car made it back all the way to Barcelona!)

Andrea Karrick on January 7th, 2008 at 3:00 pm #

I hope you do not mind, but I came across your site after some site hopping here in the States.

I know how you feel about the mouse. We have a cat..who only catches the mouse to play with it and will not kill it. Our mouse has gotten so brave that he “throws” the trap back onto the kitchen floor after he eats the peanut butter (he has a tunnel behind a cabinet.) My husband is going nuts about it. To think..the little mouse is actually taunting us!

Lingamish on January 7th, 2008 at 8:11 pm #

And since we’re talking about house guests, say hi to Eddie!

sue arthur on January 9th, 2008 at 10:57 pm #

Have you tried getting a cat? Otherwise I would recommend some stuff called ‘Ratstop’ which we used in Ivory Coast. It’s a special sort of glue which is supposed to be ‘effective for killing the mice’. You put some on a piece of wood/cardboard where the mouse is like to run and it gets stuck. Unfortunately one morning we woke to find a mouse caught on the glue that had tried so hard to escape it had desperately started eating it’s own leg – not a nice sight – then we threw it in the bush. Not too sure what you do with them in town…..

nora on January 11th, 2008 at 1:09 am #

I second Sue’s suggestion to get a cat. I have seven lovely kittens, you may certainly have one or two or five of them.