Monday, June 16, 2008

The Wild Ride of Mr. Wilbur

Yesterday morning I was roused rather rudely and suddenly by Mom's urgent exclamation: "Trayce! Wilbur's out!" My consciousness has never slammed back into my body so fast. I was instantly awake. A glance at the blue cat carrier showed the door still closed and locked, but indeed my fuzzy rat was not in there. I saw how he had chewed through the plastic between the ventilation holes in the side of the travel cage, making a big enough escape route for his tiny, squishy self. This is one of the reasons I feel so under the gun to get into a place - it's like playing against the clock. They need to be back in their regular escape-proof cages.

Katy and I have had to catch Wilbur before and unfortunately he is the smallest, fastest ball of fur I have. He wasn't hard to spot on the dark carpet (he's all white). It's good that hotels don't have a lot of furniture, but he ran under every piece just the same. Even with two of us trying to corner him he slipped past, careening over our laps and wriggling through our hands several times. They say white men can't jump, but lemme tell you, white chinchillas can. Straight up into your face. I'm still the smarter animal though.

When I realized I wasn't going to catch the little brat with my hands, and throwing my sweatshirt over him didn't even work, I tried the oats. Wilbur loves rolled oats, the kind you make oatmeal out of. I buy the organic ones at Whole Foods and put a pinch into each of their bowls when I feed them at night. As soon as he receives his food, Wilbur hunkers over his bowl until every oat piece is gone. It's an intense concentration, the kind only an addict has, and I had no qualms about using it against him.

I put some in his dish, rattled it a bit, and set it on the floor. Mom was very busy stuffing pillows around the chair he was under to block him in when he hopped out behind her back to sniff around. I literally picked him up and effectively ended his romp.

Humans - 1
Fuzzy Brats - 0

I had cardboard and packing tape in my car from the move, so I used that to cover the hole in the cage. Cardboard is even easier to chew through than plastic, but only if he can get a grip on the edge. So far this has kept him in, but I know I'm only buying time, and there's not too much for sale. I noticed Edwyn started the same project on his cage, so we fixed that up too to discourage any further escape attempts. We also locked all the cages in the bathroom yesterday while we were out looking at apartments. So far so good.

Things are getting better. Probably because I adjusted my attitude. Wanna change your life? Change your mind. I found a house in Escondido I like although I have no idea how I'll afford it every month if they approve me. I found a good Plan B place too in Bonsall with lots of storage and a garage so I can sort through all this crap I dragged across the country and get rid of more of it. I've found more organic grocery stores, which is encouraging, and I think as soon as the Jeep is cleared of all the stuff rattling around in the back, driving will become a lot easier too.

I'm trying to focus on the success I've already had of people chasing me to be their tenant too. I stopped and ran across the road the other day to get a number from a For Rent sign, and an older couple actually turned their car around and pulled over to ask if I was looking for a place to live. I said I was, but their property wasn't available until October, so I thanked them for asking and we went our separate ways. Another guy with a house I viewed called and wanted me to be his tenant. It was a beautiful serene place on top of a hill with a well-tended zen garden, but I knew he wasn't too thrilled about my animals and I didn't like that the electric for all three tenants was on one bill and would be split according to what he thought was fair.

So I still don't have an address, but I hope the house comes through and if it doesn't, I have a backup place. If that rents in the meantime I guess I'll still be looking but hopefully this will all fall together today. I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

1 comment:

Jenn Flynn-Shon said...

It's an intense concentration, the kind only an addict has, and I had no qualms about using it against him


Keeping my fingers crossed that you rent an apartment as fast as Wilbur runs girl! :~D