Sunday, December 8, 2019

Bats in the Belfry ... Cats in the Attic

Life never stays boring around here!  A few weeks ago I started hearing noise in the ceiling ... movement type noises! At first I though it might be something on the roof or even from next door as sound can do strange things.

After hearing it a few more times, I asked Geoffrey to listen for it and we soon found if we made any noise in the bedroom, there would be NO noise up there. So ... logic dictated that we apparently had something alive up in the ceiling space, I dread to call it an attic as my concept of attics is old fashioned and you can get in them easily and walk around. Here it is the space between the ceilings and the roof.

After a few days to develop certainty, we decided we better find someone who knows about wildlife where it shouldn't be. Geoff and I are too old and handicapped and chubby to get up there and look ourselves! We soon had Jason of TruTech Wildlife Removal coming out to check on our noises. A large outfit with a local office.

Jason has lots of experience with raccoons and squirrels and other sorts of mammalian intruders but what he found was new to him: kittens! Three of them to be exact, tucked away in the edges of the bedroom ceiling crawl space. We pretty much knew right away who had deposited them there as a black calico female frequents our backyard and when last seen had obviously recently had kittens.

The picture to the left is not her but looks a lot like her.

We were immediately relieved that it was not one or more squirrels. Some of them live in the trees in our backyard but I really did not want them in my attic! Jason tried to catch the kittens but was afraid of hurting them and had trouble trying to get to them.

He finally decided to try warning them off and put male raccoon scent up in the attic space.It took a few days to be sure but the mommy cat apparently took her babies elsewhere. Whether it was the general disturbance of being discovered or the raccoon scent we don't know but a couple of days later, all was quiet up there.

Jason and his assistant returned and disinfected etc the attic area and then cemented shut all the entry points so we can relax about the possibility of squirrels.

Don't know where the mommy cat took her babies and have yet to find out which house she really lives at but we don't think she is a feral cat.

Roomba bits and pieces and other stuff

To start with, I must say that getting Geoff the Roomba was a brilliant idea. Once things settled down a little and they got used to each other, my floors get cleaned on a regular basis. One does end up talking to it like to a small child, one cannot help it and sometimes I have to laugh when I hear Geoff talking to it in another room.

Geoff insists it follows him around and when it is scheduled to do the living room and our offices he brings it in here to spend time with mommy because it tends to stay in his office and not even come in here. We have even been reduced to shutting the office door and trapping it in here so it will clean my office!

Overheard the other day, Geoff, in the bedroom, says “I know, you need to go home and get charged.” and gently picks it up and carries it to its charger/home. It does needs to work on finding the way home.

Things have been relatively quiet recently. I did manage to burn my wrist on the oven rack. I forget what I was cooking, one of those things that insists on being turned over halfway through I think. The burn was worse than usual so I figured I better see if we had any burn ointment around to put on it.

Poking through the first aid collection in the bathroom I came across some packets of Burn Free, a burn gel we had had in the RV. They had spent a couple of years in there and suffered through the kind of heat we get in there when its parked so instead of a gel it was a liquid! But, it was all we seemed to have so I dribbled it over the burn.

Instant relief! In spite of having overheated while sitting for ages in the RV, this stuff worked! I'm not one to particularly brag on a product but this one I figured I should share about. Most household burns are so minimal a few minutes in cold water or such works fine but sometimes you need more and this stuff is it! The next day I ordered more of it to keep in our various first aid kits!

My entire life I have had black thumbs not green ones ... probably all of my fingers as well. I have tried more gardens than any reasonable person would attempt and had little to no luck. The large fern we had in front of the house even died, following into death the azaleas that had flanked it. The azaleas down around the mailbox do just fine so I figure there is a radius to me black death thumb.

Recently I spotted the cutest little air plant and holder at our local grocery store from LiveTrendsDesign. I couldn't resist and told myself that maybe an air plant would be an exception and actually survive. One year my sister sent me a Christmas Cactus and it lived for a few months even so maybe ...

It was not to be. Air plants must be stubborn tough little things because it held out for weeks and weeks and then whoops ... it looked sort of gray and well, dead. I looked online and tried soaking it and a couple of other suggestions with no luck.

On another front, as Geoff puts it, the snowbirds have arrived, in this case he refers to the Canadian Geese. In face, our pond behind the house seems to have exploded with flocks of egrets and cranes of various colors, geese and who knows what else. I can tell which ones are geese but after that, Florida has a gazillion different water wading birds! The pond over near Publix used to draw most of them to its east bank where they would bask in the afternoon sun but construction has disturbed that landing spot so they seem to have taken to our ponds instead.

And just in case anyone is wondering how my hat collection is doing (probably not), there are around 70 to 80 of them hanging out in my closet. Shortly before our last trip I ordered an NCIS hat since I am a fan of the show.

After we got back I sent for a Black Rifle Coffee Company hat choosing this one since I had none in the light blue and I find I tend to wear them more often with the mesh back, a bit cooler in Florida than the solid hats.

Why Black Rifle Coffee Company? BRCC first off is very supportive of veterans and first responders and actually not only hires returning veterans but is veteran owned and operated. Their coffee is excellent and only the fact that I am a tea drinker keeps me from buying their coffee. Most of all, their attitude and Youtube videos are a riot. I don't use the coffee but I can support them by buying other stuff there.