We almost made it!

Mark and I have this tradition we’ve been doing almost since we first bought our house. We live near the end of a long road, so when I go out to see him off to work in the morning, I stand in the road and wave to him until he turns the corner. He usually rolls his window down and reaches out to wave to me two or three times as he drives down the road.

This morning I waved Mark down the road and then I turned to go back into the RV. I had barely taken a step in that direction when I froze… Not more than a few feet in front of me was a three-foot-long fox snake, a tan-colored snake with dark brown spots on its back.

Door to Nature: The Fox Snake - Door County Pulse
This isn’t a picture of the snake I saw, but mine looked similar to this.

The snake and I eyed each other for a few seconds and then he slithered off into our side yard through some grass that’s a little too tall. I didn’t see exactly where he went after I lost sight of him, so I told Mark I’m not going to walk around in the yard until he mows it! It’s not that I’m particularly afraid of it biting me because there are no poisonous snakes in Wisconsin, but I wouldn’t want to be startled by it again the way I was this morning.

Actually, fox snakes eat mice, so I should be glad it’s out there. However, yesterday Mark found a dead mouse in the garage and surmised that it had eaten some of the poison the exterminator had left outside the garage. If the fox snake ate one of those, it might get poisoned too, so if it’s going to help keep the mouse population down, it better not eat any mice around our house right now.

Mark and I have been waiting for a washing machine we ordered in Green Bay to come in. It was supposed to have arrived today, but Mark got an email from them saying it’s been delayed until the 17th. I had to pack up all our laundry, including the sheets for our bed that the mice had left droppings on, to the laundromat today.

When I came home and made the bed, I was really hopeful that we’d be able to sleep in the house tonight. I started washing all the dishes that had been in the cupboard and I changed the shelf paper on four shelves, which is as far as the shelf paper lasted. We had cleared off the shelves in my bedroom closet a few days ago (that’s when I found out the mice had been in our sheets), but Mark hadn’t cleaned off his bedroom shelves yet so I suggested he do that. It looks as though the mice were busier on his shelf than on mine. It was so bad that Mark carried his stuff out onto the deck in back and went to the store to try to find some sanitizing spray. When he came back, he had found three cans of fogger that said they would sanitize our house and make it smell nice and citrusy.

We had already moved the cats into the house a few days ago, so Mark brought them back to the RV. I finished washing all the dishes and we shut them away in their cupboards. Then Mark set the foggers off and we left the house to get sanitized overnight. We were so close to moving in today if only we hadn’t found more that the mice had messed up. Barring finding any more messes, we hope to get moved in tomorrow. It will have been two weeks since we got home!

I’m looking forward to going to church tomorrow. It will be the first Sunday they’ve met in the building since the governor ordered all public gather places to close. It just so happens to be when my two weeks of the self-quarantine end as well. A friend I used to carpool with last year contacted me and asked if I’d like to ride with her again tomorrow. I told her I would be glad to. I will be wearing a mask, and as I understand it, my church has taken a number of safety precautions, including roping off every other pew and having hand sanitizer at each of the entrances. Masks are optional, but until a cure is found for COVID-19, I think I’ll just remain cautious. I’m not in any great hurry to let my guard down yet.

How many of my readers have church services beginning to take place in their church buildings now?

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