Wednesday, November 4, 2009

There's a lizard in my dining room

Hannah* has written about encountering various creatures in her apartment. There was the 5-inch bug and more recently, the mouse. Living in Florida I have encountered many creatures outside, and occasionally see cockroaches in the house. It's gross, we have a guy come spray but they're smart suckers and they survive! We stomp on them and move on. Well, this morning presented a new challenge. (see title of blog post)

Yesterday was the first day it's been cool enough to open the windows. Yes you read that right, and yes it is November. So I did. Every window in our house was open to the max. For about an hour, I also opened our back patio door, which does not have a screen. When Michael got home he questioned my logic citing lizards and bugs roaming about out of doors. There were no bugs and I did not see any lizards milling about so I was good to go. Plus, lizards are afraid of people (typically) and tend to avoid us and our living quarters whenever possible.

This morning, Michael's worry was justified. I did not notice it until 9:45 this morning, after having been up and about the house for more than 3 hours. Then again, I did not venture into the dining room either. I was walking down the stairs with a basket of laundry and saw what appeared to be a lizard sitting on the floor. I asked outloud "What are you doing in here?" and, thankfully, got no response. I walked a few paces into the room and verified that it was, indeed, a lizard. And then realized I was going to have to remove it. [most] Bugs are easy. You step on them, or if they're a huge cockroach, smash it with the large issue of InStyle magazine. Then you grab a few paper towels and windex to clean up the guts and you're done. But reptiles pose a new set of challenges. They have bones and skin and BLOOD for God's sake. I decided a broom and dustpan would be good tools to try.

However, I also wondered, in the back of my mind, Is that lizard dead? I weighed my options. Lizards are usually very jumpy creatures, and he was still. Likely dead. BUT! I didn't see him there last night when I closed the windows, so he hasn't been in that spot very long. He wouldn't dry out in less than 12 hours and I saw no signs of trauma. Could be alive. Hmmm. Better poke him with the broom first to investigate. HOLY JUMPING LIZARD, BATMAN! It was alive. I yelled a PG-13 rated expletive. So he IS alive, but slowed down greatly. I suspect the roach poison that is regularly sprayed in our home has an adverse affect on reptiles. (Good to know)

The problem has become: How do I remove a STILL LIVING REPTILE from my house?
I tried to gently usher him onto the dustpan with the broom. He was afraid, and I can't blame him. When a huge giant person is interacting with your micro reptilian self, you tend to freak out. He was reluctant to get onto the dustpan, but I eventually convinced him it was alright. Then I had to get said lizard transport device from the dining room out the front door. Not far away at all. We were doing OK at this point. Then he decided to jump off the dustpan and run further into the room. So onto plan B, which is essentially desperation on both of our parts. I decided that sweeping him along the floor like a crumb would be a good idea. Not so much. It only elicited more jumping and spasmodic behavior. Not knowing what to do, I used the broom as a mallet and tapped him. This certainly put an end to the jumping about. It stunned him. I then quickly swept him into the foyer and out the door (but not before he got stuck on the doorjam, ick) Sadly, I think that in his weakened state, my tap might have actually killed him. I swept him onto the porch and into the bushes, and really don't feel like seeing if he's still there. Hopefully he hopped away, but if not, I guess another creature will have a tasty treat. Circle of life and all that.

Needless to say, the patio door is CLOSED at the moment. However, in my defense, it's quite possible he got in through a window screen. They are not a snug fit and it's highly possible for a small reptile or amphibian to wedge through the small crack between the screen and the frame. But the open door for sure did not help.

*Do you know Hannah? (aka Pannie) Because if you have been reading my blog this long and haven't heard about her, well, you aren't paying attention.

1 comment:

Hannah said...

My hysterical giggles generated a "what's so funny?" from my office neighbor. "I saw no signs of trauma." Hilarious.