Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Semi Urban Life

For the most part I like living right on top of Detroit – I really do… I know it has its problems, but that doesn’t stop it from having some good aspects too.

We can zip down the road and within seven minutes be in the center of the city, we can go to ball games, hockey games (when they are not in a lockout - I personally still have no idea why they are not playing), hit great bars, good food, see live bands, go to cultural things – museums of all kinds, Symphonies, Operas, live theater, have a walk along the water, ice skate – many, many lovely things.

But along with being semi-surrounded by the urban-ness of the city, we also get to share in the urban-ness of a city.  Which I am going to say I prefer to the rural-ness of a farm…

Can you guess what we have by the picture above?  No?  Then you must live somewhere quite nice…. A real manufactured suburban town instead of a quasi-suburban (really it’s urban) town like ours.

Well here are some clues; they have four legs, fur and a big long naked tail – uhhuh, rats.  
Now here’s the thing, rats make most people’s skin crawl – but I have to say, they really do mind their own business and do their own thing.  And we have them because Detroit has alleys and trash dumpsters and steamy sewers - things that collect four legged rodents, like the rat. 

You don’t see them much, if at all, they come out in the evening at dusk.  If you are looking, you might catch one running along the fence line (or drinking in our pond, which is along the fence line).  You also see their little footprints in the snow - but for the most part, they really are invisible.  Except for all the holes they dig around your house – to the tunnels they live in.   

Once or twice a year, to feel like I am doing my part, I shove rat poison down the holes with a stick.  It’s that time of year.  I couldn’t find the poison I regularly use (no Lowes does not carry rat poison – mouse yes, rat no – funny, they should know their immediate surrounding a little better….and the small local hardware store was out), so my sister, who lives in more of a rural area, hit the tractor supply store for me and picked me up a bucket.  

I have to say, if given a choice, I MUCH prefer a rat to the filthy dirty, poop dropping, food cabinet infesting, comforter nesting, living room crossing, car glove box hiding, whole life infiltrating - mouse – which thankfully we do not have and have never had the whole time I’ve lived in this area (but as you can tell, I am familiar with them from a previous life in another city, yuck).

Once, a couple years ago now, I was heading out the back door and there was a rat, just waddling along the patio, out of character - in bright daylight.  I stood for a moment in awe and then realized – I should grab my camera, she is moving really slow, but I missed her – I decided it was a she because it was really waddling – must have been carrying a few hundred babies… and yeah, that day rat poison went into the tunnels with a stick….

And then there was the first time I ever saw a rat (or should I say rats), it was at my last house, I looked out the back door and thought– awwww how cute, look at the bunnies playing – AAAHHHCCCKKKKK, those aren’t bunnies!!!!! I had never seen a live rat “in the wild” before, they really aren’t small and they most certainly aren’t bunnies….. 

So yeah, the creatures are stirring - it’s that time of year, sorry little rodent but I’m gonna have to take a few of you down… I hear the plague has been making a comeback.  Yum, what is this fluorescent blue stuff - trick or treat???