It’s really getting cold in Chicago. When you listen to the weather forecast on radio or tv, they always talk about the windchill now. Because even though the thermometer says that it’s 28 degrees, that nasty wind blowing right through you and freezing your bones makes it feel like it’s only 16 degrees. And it’s important that we understand this difference. Why, I haven’t yet figured out, but it must be important or they wouldn’t remind us so often, right?
I’ve started my appropriate layering. I’ve moved out of the long sleeve t-shirts and blouses and into heavier sweaters and sweatshirts and fleeces even. I’m burrowing in, spending as little time outside as I possibly can.
And I’m not the only one.
Pshaw, you say. It’s winter. It happens every year; get over it.
I’ve got proof though. Honest to goodness proof. I heard it tonight. Or rather, I heard them. They’re back.
We live in the suburbs with a nature conservancy behind us with lots of nice trees and such. Even when the leaves are off the trees in winter, there are no houses to see behind us anywhere. It’s really quite nice, except for some of the wildlife.
I’ve figured out how to deal with the deer. The mice, however, confound me. This is the second winter that they’ve realized how good people have it and snuck into our attic. I hear them scritch scritching around above my head when I’m sitting in the family room and when I’m in bed trying to sleep. They’re nocturnal creatures, apparently, so they don’t bother me during the day — only when I’m trying to relax.
Last year, I hired exterminators in November when I first heard the noises. The nice man came and placed poison in the appropriate places around the attic (the kind that makes them thirsty so they run outside). We waited until I heard no noises for two weeks before he came back and filled in five holes into the attic that they found. They have a six month guarantee, which unfortunately I had to utilize. Twice. They found some more holes the second time but not the third. Fortunately, April arrived, and they went back outside and left us alone.
Until tonight. Little did I know how much mice hate winter. I’ll be hauling out the yellow pages again to call a pest company. Given the success the folks had last year, I may be using a different company. Of course, those folks actually called me back. The first company I called couldn’t be bothered.
Add this to the list of reasons to move out of the frigid north.