Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Midnight Intruder

In Haiti, visitors that come unannounced and uninvited are inevitable in your home. Rats, snakes, tarantulas, frogs, scorpions, mice, lizards, ants and some other creatures yet to be identified. No matter how much Raid or Bondo you use, they always seem to find a way into your haven of comfort.

A few weeks ago in the middle of the night, I woke up with the wind blowing in forcefully from my open window. Chilled, I got up to close it, and then laid back down. I was about to fall back asleep when I felt something move in my hair. It made me sit up and gaze around for a second, but I figured it was just the wind, so I put my head down and tried to fall back asleep without the fear of a creature in my house keep me awake. Before I could relax though, I heard the lamp on my bedside table shift, and as I opened my eyes, I saw a shadow, about the size of a large rat, move swiftly from the table to the floor. Seeing the dark shadow snapped my brain into adrenaline mode as I leapt from my bed and dashed to flick on the lights. Anything to save me from the frightening darkness of the unknown. My glasses were still on my bedside table and I wasn't about to go anywhere near the THING, so I blindly searched for something to defend myself. My heart was pounding. My mind fled back to when I was laying in my bed a few minutes ago... Could there have been a RAT in my BED!?!? The horrible visions of a greasy rat climbing onto my mattress. Leaving dirty pawprints on my sheets. Stalking and sniffing me. Or nibbling my finger. Or worse.

I nervously glanced around, making quick searches under my bed, and then I stopped.
There, sitting in a calm posture in my doorway was...


I stood in disbelief for a moment, and then relief showered over me.
With much better piece of mind, I returned to my bed to get my glasses, and then managed to whisk Izzy out of my apartment and back to her home (Rachel's house). As I entered my living area I assessed the damage. Somehow Izzy was determined to get into my house and managed to break through the side of my weak window screen. I drowsily made a makeshift clamp to close the gap with some wire, and then returned to my bed to sleep for the rest of the night.

Since that time, my window has been fully repaired and my rusty window wire was even replaced with some fresh clean screen. Truly a Haitian luxury! Everything was fully re-taped and I was convinced that it would keep all of the nocturnal creatures out.

Last night I was proved wrong once again.
I woke shortly after midnight hearing some scratching noises in my kitchen. I figured the mouse family under my sink must have been starting their Christmas party early this year, and didn't think much of it.... As long as they are in the kitchen and not in my bed. I fell back to sleep and was awakened minutes later by a familiar sound. Meowing.

Good ol' Izzy had found her way inside again.... I guess the packing tape around my window didn't quite cut it. So once again I let her out of the house, re-taped the window and went back to sleep until morning.

I'm sure it's not the last time that I will get a nightly visit from my friend next door... She's pretty crafty, and it may take more than packing tape to keep her out. But this I can say without a doubt, I'll take her intrusions any day (or night) when she keeps the rest of Haiti's creepers and crawlers out!

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