Tag Archives: pests

(D)Rats

It pains me to record this story, but…

We had a rat at 3675.

Being the clean freak that I am, “rats” aren’t something I ever imagined I’d personally ever encounter, in MY home. Even as it sits on the precipice of its centennial birthday, with its dirt-floor crawlspace and steamy attic, right in the middle of the crowded Bay Area, overrun with urban wildlife feasting on the local and sustainable bounty of year-round backyard gardens…

My home is (or was, in my mind) an air-tight rodent fortress.

I’m only mildly comforted, still, by the fact that rats can be found in one-third of all homes in America. Like, barely comforted. 3675 had to be a 2 or a 3 – so clean you can eat off the floor in every room, inspected top to bottom inside and out on the first each month for signs of so much as a hairline crack

But alas, I saw the rat. It ran RIGHT IN FRONT OF MY FACE – I kid you not, I felt a breeze – while I examined what I thought had to be a harmless little mouse dropping in the basement behind the washing machine.

I’ll never feel the same about what lies beyond this door…

Mice, by the way, are NOT THE SAME AS RATS. Mice are tiny – cute, even. I’ve encountered plenty of mice before: in my office while working late, in our woodpile at our mountain home…

Rats: they are not cute. Continue reading

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Nature Drama

After recently having so many good days in nature, I’m now having some bad ones.

First, two of my three prized tomato plants decided to take a turn for the worse.

Then my cucumber vine decided to put all its efforts into a single cuke, leaving the other eight on the vine in a state of perpetual cuke infancy.

Then a nice coating of powdery mildew showed up on the youngest of my rose bushes – the dainty little one I’d been laboring over patiently for months, waiting for its first blooms. And now I’ve chopped those blooms off prematurely and sprayed the naked stem left behind with fungicide. AND IT MOCKS ME.

But really, I’m most pissed off at this:

Goddammit.

Goddammit.

Continue reading

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