It is a sad fact that we have a varmint in our classroom. I first began to suspect this a few weeks ago, when I found a bag of my play dough ingredients with a strange hole in the corner of it. (Yes, this is one of the suspect-looking bags that Jason could have been arrested for in downtown Fresno not long ago.) Then I found a package of nibbled-on crackers in the bag we carry to the cafeteria lunch. Finally, the morning teacher saw a bit of fuzz on the ground out of the corner of her eye, and when she looked again - it was gone.
As a result, the custodians have set a trap. Or two. I'm not sure exactly how many, because I have not actually seen the traps. In fact, I have been working to avert my eyes from any of the places that I think theymight be set to avoid seeing the trapped mouse in Trapped-Mouse Agony.
After a few days, though, one begins to lose this Heightened Mouse Consciousness and begins to forget that a mouse existed. So it was yesterday when I was puttering around after school cleaning up. I was removing papers and various objects off the counter top when I noticed that someone had spilled something on the counter. I grabbed my handy container of Clorox wipes and began to wipe it up, thinking, "Now, who spilled something over here and didn't clean it up?". It looked like some kind of red juice, and it was kind of - spread out in drops and smears all over the counter top. I was wiping up these strange dried-up red puddles when suddenly I spotted several little mouse droppings amongst the red stains, and it suddenly hit me - this was mouse blood. MOUSE BLOOD! Apparently our mouse had somehow been injured, but had still managed to drag his wounded self across the counter, leaving mouse blood everywhere. It was like a crime scene from a graphic mouse crime novel.
I admit that I didn't even finish the job. I threw my wipe away and grabbed the hand sanitizer, suddenly having visions of a wounded, bleeding little Mouse Zombie lurking behind the microwave or staggering out from the recesses of the filing cabinet...and I left.
I wanted to leave a big note pointing to the blood trail for the custodian marked, "MOUSE BLOOD! PLEASE FIND INJURED PARTY AND TAKE IT AWAY!", but I didn't know if that is part of a custodian's job description or not. So I just fled.
I hope it gets taken care of though. Because a little Mouse Blood is more than enough mouse for me.