There I was ... sitting in my recliner finishing up a cup of coffee. The breakfast dishes had just been washed, the plants had all been rotated their quarter turn, the windows- opened to allow for the cross breeze - a very normal start to what seemed like a normal day.
Brody was laying on the floor behind my chair - one of his favorite resting spots. I was catching up on my DVR when something unfamiliar distracted me. A noise coming from the back of the room. A weird scratching noise. I muted the TV immediately. The noise became louder. I could hear metal echoing in the ruckus. There was something in my fireplace.
I have been petrified of this occurrence since the day we bought the house. Naturally Gregg was at work. Because every time I am frozen with fear in a situation of horror Gregg is at work. So it's just me and Brody and the creature. The fiasco continued - scratching, banging and then the creepy and horrifying fluttering. Up until the fluttering I was convinced that I had a National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation episode going on. Only instead of the squirrel hitching a ride inside via the Christmas tree this guy parachuted in from the roof. I was shaking. Shaking with fear. Knowing that any second something was going to come shooting out of that fireplace and either run around the house or attach itself to my face as I scream myself to death. Brody was stressed out. He was tracking the fellow with each scratch. I worked up the nerve to take a glance - from a very fair distance - into the fireplace doors. I didn't see anything moving. No ashes swirling around. Nothing. Then the noise got louder. Holy shit this effing thing was in my CABINET. There is a cabinet under the built-in bookcases with two doors. Those two doors don't shut properly. The creature was behind those two doors. And any second he was going to work up enough force to open those doors and stop my heart. I literally RACED over there and slid the end table up against the cabinet. I felt good about that decision. There was no way he was getting out now.
What next? What the hell do you do in this situation? I have no idea. Who would I call?? Most people, I am sure, would have just opened the doors and let whatever was in there OUT and take care of it that way. Yeah no. I see enough death in my backyard and the last thing I need is to have Brody demonstrating the food chain on my couch. I would die. So naturally I call my mom because she has the answer to everything. She says to give Animal Control a whirl. I felt a little foolish calling them because I am sure they would laugh about a bird or squirrel situation when they have calls to scrape mountain lions off the highway. But WHATEVER it's my city service and I need their help, right?? So I call. This went brilliantly.
Me: Yeah I have something trapped in my living room bookcases and I need someone to get that out for me.
Dispatcher: What exactly do you have trapped in there?
Me: I don't know - maybe a squirrel or a bird.
Dispatcher: Well can you open the doors and the window and see if it will fly out on its own?
Me: Yeah no. I can't do that at all. That could work if it's a bird but squirrels don't fly and I'm not sure what it is and I'm not letting it out into my living room.
Dispatcher: So there's no way you can open the doors and the window?
Me: Oh that's totally doable - if someone else does it. I personally cannot let this creature out.
Dispatcher: Okay we'll send someone.
I thought it was odd that this woman was so confidant in her golden plan. I almost asked her if she would like to come over and open the doors and window. Miss Brave Britches. Anyway relief was on the way...
I threw on some makeup and literally sat by the window anxiously awaiting this superhero. Well, the superhero pulls up and really blew my preconceived notion of an Animal Control officer. Picture Al Bundy + Ray Romano only taller and older. He didn't have a flashlight, he didn't have a net or a shovel and he wasn't wearing a Hazmat suit. What the hell was this guy gonna do?? By the time he arrived the fluttering noise had traveled back behind the fireplace wall and the other side of my bookcases. The creature was trying to find his own way out. He was basically trapped in the wall. The guy knocked around for a bit and offered a suggestion of leaving bread out to attract the beast. Yeah no. So failed superhero leaves and tells me to call him back if said beast heads back into the cabinet.
So now what? I am to sit there and wait until the fluttering stops which ensures this guys death somewhere in my wall?? Ugh. Things were quiet for a few minutes and then right back to fluttering cabinet banging. Sounds ridiculous but this was such a scary noise!! So I called homeboy back. While waiting for him, I listened as our "friend" moved back and forth in the walls. Luckily just as Animal Control pulled up the beast headed back behind the doors. Guy walked in, opened the window and moved the table to prepare for the opening of the doors. I'm standing there petrified, holding Brody on his leash and the doors open. Out flies this medium sized gray bird - dizzily moving throughout my house. He zipped past me, I ducked, Brody jumped. Brody was barking, I was zig-zagging around ducking and covering. The bird flew through my dining room, back through the living room, into the stairway back over to the living room window and finally out through the dining room slider. OH the wave of relief. I thanked the door opener and he was on his way. Harrowing situation - over.
I slid the table back into place and released Brody from his leash. He slept on the floor for hours following the fiasco. I was certain that I did the right thing by calling Animal Control. Honestly, if I didn't - that bird would have died in our walls. There was no way that I was opening those doors. When Gregg got home he covered up the "hole" that leads from the outside of the fireplace into the cabinet. We were going to do that months ago but decided to be lazy about it. So ha haaa to me. Such a hilarious way of letting me know that procrastination is always a horrible idea. Still, I live to fight another day ...