Aesops Fables (1912), Illustration by Arthur Rackham

When people hear that I live in the country they always say the same things.

Oh you must love the fresh country air!

It must be nice to live where it’s so quiet!

I’ll bet your windows are always open!

Um… no. See, people that say these things are typically people that live in town, or in big cities. The truth is, sometimes it literally stinks to live in the country… at certain times of the year farmers spread fertilizer over the fields… and if you’re lucky enough to live near a farm that has animals all it takes is wind blowing from the right direction. It’s a pretty common thing to walk outside and get smacked in the face by the odor of poop.

Another thing that really blows about country life? Mice. I hate mice… I’m not scared of them, I hate them. Big difference.

I really think that everyone has a mouse or two running around in the house. The thing about being in the country is that when the farmers start working in the fields it drives the mice out. All of these displaced little mice suddenly have nowhere to go… and your house looks mighty inviting.

I’ve been pretty busy lately, and today I’ve been home all day for the first time in a while. I put O down for his midday nap and started wandering around the house, picking things up as I went. I got to the kitchen and realized I needed to take the trash out… I’d pushed it down until there was seriously no room left. I pulled the bag out of the bin and gave it a little shake before I started to tie it closed… all of a sudden something flew out of the trash bag and hit me on the chest. I stood there dumbfounded for a brief second before the thing started moving… I looked down just in time to see it crawl down my shirt.

It was a mouse. A disgusting, vile, dirty, disease-carrying, nasty little mouse.

I let out a shriek that was probably heard within a ten-mile radius… How O didn’t wake up, I have no idea. I could feel it crawling around in my shirt searching for a way out. It was headed up my back, so I bent over and frantically tried to pull my shirt over my head. The nasty little vermin somehow got tangled in the hair at the nape of my neck, causing me to bolt upright and scream again. Now I was turning in circles, yelling profanities and slapping myself in the back of my head. I bent over again and immediately slammed my arm into the chest freezer. At first I was pissed (because, ouch) but I heard a little thud and looked down in time to see the mouse scramble a little on the hardwood floor and then scurry into a heating vent.

I stood there holding my shirt, out of breath and shaking violently, and vowed that I would hunt that mouse down and end its nasty little life.

Then I had to go sit on the couch and recover for a good little while. I can still feel its sharp little claws on my back.

So no, living in the country isn’t always fresh air and bunny rabbits, ok?

I just went back into the kitchen to take the trash bag outside since my heart rate has almost returned to normal. As I picked the bag up, something moved inside it. I screamed and ran away. I’m gonna need therapy.