"Cowardice asks the question...is it safe? Expediency asks the question...is it politic? Vanity asks the question...is it popular? But conscience asks the question...is it right? And there comes a time when one must take a position that is neither safe, nor politic, nor popular but one must take it because it is right." ~Dr. Martin Luther King

Tuesday, 27 December 2011


It's a day like any other day. It starts. It ends. What you do in between makes the difference.

If you're alone, what you do makes no difference to anyone but yourself.

This Christmas, I resolved to take a holiday from  town business for at least a couple of days.

I bought  two books.  Books have always been my refuge.I could always lose myself completely in somebody else's story if it was a good one. It entirely depends on the author.

It used to be, I had to  finish every book I started.  I literally wouldn't put it down until the end. Then I would slide into bed before daylight to conceal that I wasn't there all night. 

When the kids were small it was the book, the mouse in the house and me.

He was a field mouse and only came into  the house in the fall.

With a high chair in the kitchen there were always crumbs on the floor. When  the house was quiet  and I  would be  on the couch with my feet up, I would become aware of movement in the kitchen.

After he'd eaten, he would come into the sitting room, make his way along the wall under the couch and climb up under the curtain to reach the window sill. I could see the curtain move as he made the ascent.

The sliding windows had  metal knobs to open and close. They were easily removed and  whoever was the youngest and on his feet. would spend lotsa  time doing just that. So  holes left by  missing knobs allowed free passage of cold winter air. He would make his way along the window sill to the first hole and sit there for a while breathing in the cold.

Then he would  make his way back to the end of the window sill,climb down  the curtain and return to his lair, wherever that was. Years later the frig was being replaced  and I learned it had been on top of the warm workings underneath .

People told me he was filthy and disgusting. Where there's one mouse there's a dozen,they said.

That's how I knew he was a male mouse and single, at least during the winter months. First things first,I guess. 

He came in Fall and left in Spring. I didn't encourage him. I told everybody in the house to keep doors closed. There were cats galore in the neighbourhood.

I figured, if he could survive outside long enough to need winter shelter and never venture where he should not be, I could let him be. He wintered over at least twice.

Later, there were mice. They had to go. I placed sticky paper traps. Mice were caught but escaped leaving a good part of their coats behind.There must have been a few bare butts behind the walls.

I bought a trap-alive and took captured creatures to the ravine on Henderson Drive and set them free.

Invariably they would run frantic back and forth before finding their way to the ravine. I held my breath in fear they would head for the road and get run over.

Those left behind in the house learned how to get into the trap, eat the cheese or peanut butter snack, and leave the way they arrived.

Then and only then, did I resort to desperate measures.

This post was not to be about the mouse in my house who only came out when he and I were the only ones awake.

It was to be about the book. "Don't Vote. It just encourages the Bastards"

The title was a quote from somebody's mother.

I started it yesterday. Haven't finished it yet. I will though.

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