A tiny intruder saves the day!
Mar 9, 2011
Spring cleaning doesn’t have to happen in the spring.
That’s what I told myself as I looked around my workroom one chilly afternoon. It was looking pretty cluttered. My desk was covered with papers and bits of my many craft projects: yarn, crochet needles, straw, fabric, thread. It needed tidying up, but I could think of a dozen other things I’d rather spend the day doing. It can wait, I told myself.
But as I turned to go, I spotted something on the floor. I looked closer: mice. The evidence was unmistakable. The Dominican Monastery where I live is in the city, but the grounds attract all sorts of animals from outside. Mice were the very worst of them all. They got into everything, were hard to catch and made a mess wherever they went. I sighed in frustration, feeling like that cartoon cat who used to shout, “I hate those meeses to pieces!” whenever one outsmarted him.
Looks like I’ll be doing that spring cleaning after all, I thought. I went to the closet and pulled out the vacuum to pick up the “evidence” of my tiny intruder.
When I leaned down to plug the vacuum into the usually empty wall socket, I was confused to see something else already plugged in. The desk lamp isn’t powered from this socket, I thought. And it’s not the digital clock. But what other electrical appliances did I run in this room?
Taking the cord in my fingers, I followed it from the socket up to my desk where it disappeared through some papers, then under a plastic bag of lace. I’d been using the lace to make angels a week before. I must have gotten distracted and left the lace out, right on top of—
“My glue gun!” I cried, lifting up the lace. It was still plugged in, still turned on, still very hot! “How long has this been smoldering?” I wondered to one of the lacy angels I’d created.
I turned the bag over in my hand. The lace was untouched but the plastic was scorched. Even a single day more and the smoldering glue gun would have started a fire for sure.
Thanking God there hadn’t been more damage, I unplugged the glue gun. As I did my eye fell on those mouse droppings again. If I hadn’t seen them, I would have put off my cleaning. I wouldn’t have turned off the gun. That merry little mouse might have saved the whole convent!
I gave my workroom a cleaning like it had never seen before. A few days later I caught my merry mouse—in a humane trap that would not injure or kill her. I released her into the garden where she scampered off to find a new home.
Now I tell everyone how much I love meeses because they kept me from going all to pieces.
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