A putrid odour has been emanating from a corner of the kitchen. I first became aware of it last night as I was making supper. On first whiff I was convinced that it was rats piss; Old Rolando has been seen hanging around quite a bit this week, not only in the flesh but evidenced by the black, lozenge shaped calling cards which he’s thoughtfully left dotted around the house. Apparently not in the least put out by my being in residence, he blithely continues to use the tops of the kitchen work surfaces and the hob as part of his daily commute to and from various parts of his manor.
Yesterday afternoon, while sat working at the kitchen table, I spotted his unmistakable form streaking across the floor and then shimmy up the side of the cupboards. Skillfully negotiating the gas hob, the microwave and various dishes on the side, he then flashed his beady rodenty eyes at me before pissing on my stack of drawings and leaping down behind the fridge. Previous daylight sightings of ratty have shown that he then swiftly negotiates the underbelly of the fridge before one last leap up and over the waist height wall and out into the garden.
However it would appear that Ratty’s nocturnal raiding of the garbage bin (rather like mine of the fridge) has resulted in a somewhat corpulent, and fuller figure – what previously had been a smooth passage from under the fridge to the outside world is now something of tight squeeze judging from the squeaks and screams to extricate himself through the narrow passage of coolant pipes and anti-chambers that make up a fridges bottom.
Ratty, on finding himself wedged in a tight spot, let out a succession of high pitched shrieks and squeaks that sent me scrambling not to his aid, but rather to the top of the table. I am petrified of rats, and the sound of his scratching and squeaks had me howling like some banshee from my spot on the table.
After what seemed like hours but was in fact just a minute or so, Ratty at last managed to unwedge himself out from whatever tight spot he’d landed him self in and was up and away over the wall. My relief was two-fold. Firstly it meant that we were not inhabiting the same space together and secondly I could replenish my glass with the wine that was in the fridge. I may have to switch to red if this continues, at least that way I can keep the bottle on the table with no fear of it getting warm, or Ratty racing up my skirt when I go to replenish my glass.
This morning the smell had become unbearable. There was a cloying, sickliness to it – the smell of rotting flesh (rat, mouse?) Wayan and I pulled out the cooker, moved everything off the kitchen tops and eventually sniffed out the root of the problem. It’s not the first time that this has happened and I’m sure that it won’t be the last. Like a couple of hounds our noses eventually led us to the microwave. I’m the first to admit to my slattern tendencies but no, as it happened it wasn’t a bowl of decaying Bolognese left festering inside from 3 weeks ago, it was a dead lizard that had crept into the fan at the bottom and died. Exactly the same thing had happened with the toaster a few months back. It seems that the tiny geckos like to crawl into the appliances on the surfaces for cover and on said appliance being switched on, they sadly meet their maker. And by maker I do not mean Mr Electrolux.
3 long hours ago I was aware of Ratty blazing his trail across the garden and into the kitchen. I grabbed my phone and crept into the kitchen to wait for him to come out from behind the fridge. There was a bit of scuffling going on, the odd squeak or two but I was convinced that if I bided my time, I could get a good shot of him streaking back across the kitchen tops before doving down into wherever it is that he lives in the bowels of the house. I can be very single-minded if needs be, my desire for catching Ratty on camera at that stage was far greater than my desire for a glass of wine but as 2 long dry hours passed, I could not bear to wait any longer. ‘Damn you Ratty’ I cursed as I grabbed the wine box, a can of soda water and a bowlful of ice and sped swiftly back to my spot on the top of the kitchen table.
You’d imagine that in my quest for more wine and subsequent foray to the fridge, door opening and rattle of ice cubes that it would set both Ratty and myself back for a while to get over the shock but, it didn’t. I was barely halfway down the first glass when out he shot. Like lightening I grabbed my phone but, Ratty with his flashing beady eyes saw this and no sooner had I got it in focus than the dastardly rat had turned back and dived behind the refrigerator. It is now one hour later. Not only is my patience wearing thin, but the wine box is now looking decidedly flaccid. What seemed like a great idea 3 hours ago now seems like a crap one. Clearly I’m not cut out for life as a paparazzi. It’s time for bed, Good Night Folks!
Having said that, I did get a picture of these two having it away in the garden. I shall be sending it over to Sunday Sport tomorrow.