A few years ago, I found a mouse in our house. The cats had caught it in the basement and played with it until it was dead. Not a pretty sight. I found it by nearly stepping on it as I walked across the concrete basement floor, heading toward the laundry area. That was the first of many such occurrences.
This year, our problem is toads. As of yesterday, we had found two toads in our basement. This morning, I found a third.
I found it because I stepped on it.
If you aren't totally grossed out, then read on. I promise you WILL be grossed out before this is over.
I was hanging laundry in the basement, having just come in from a morning walk, so I was still wearing my sneakers. Usually I take my shoes off, but I was going to go back outside, so thankfully (I think) they were still on.
As I walked back and forth across the concrete floor of the basement, hanging clothes on the clothes line, I felt/heard a pop under one of my shoes. There are all kinds of cat toys and other junk in our basement, so I really wasn't alarmed. But then I looked down and saw a tiny little toad sort of hobbling away. Needless to say, I was horrified. In fact, horrified doesn't begin to describe it. I shivered and danced and screamed and tried to shake off the "eww" that was creeping up all over me.
I ran upstairs, got a bowl and a paper towel. I picked up the poor little crippled toad with the paper towel (yes, there was a bit of blood), put it in the bowl, and took it outside. When I put it down on the grass, it was still alive, but I could see that it was hurt much worse than I originally thought. The pop I heard had pretty much split it open from end to end.
I wanted to cry. But instead, I was seriously afraid I was going to throw up.
I ran back into the house and headed for the bathroom. Yet, when I got there, I found only the dismantled toilet from my previous post, below. At that point, miraculously, the nausea abated and I just had to laugh. Maybe it was hysteria, maybe it was my feeble way of shaking off what had just happened.
Needless to say, all plans I'd made for today were suddenly cancelled, and we started cleaning the basement. When I say cleaning, I mean moving EVERYTHING. Boxes, crates, furniture, sleeping bags, camping equipment, shelves, and a million other things. The sensation of a little baby toad being squashed under my sneaker is still quite fresh in my mind and I have GOT to find their entry point into this basement.
After several hours, we didn't find the secret toad portal, but we did decide to get rid of a bunch of junk we no longer need, so it was a fruitful day in any case.
But not for the toad.
Copyright © 2008 - Paulla Estes