Visitors to GemsDirect

Everyday at work I have many visitors who happen into the store for reasons other than buying jewelry. Last week, I had two visitors of a different sort; Frankie the rat and Flat Nicole! Now if this sounds like a children's story book, I assure you it is not. Though it really could be. Frankie the rat, is, well, A RAT. Yeah, he walked in the front door late Saturday afternoon and despite my efforts and those of the VI's finest, Frankie ended up hanging around.

For a couple of days I thought about how I could get rid of Frankie, everyone suggested glue traps, which are horribly, inhumane, but I needed to get rid of this guy. He was shitting and pissing all over my jeweler's bench (which actually prompted me to get it cleaned and organized) and making the store smell just awful. I also found that he had decided a plastic bag full of 14kt yellow gold jump rings would make a nice addition the the rat's nest I am sure he was building. Plus, I have trays of loose gemstones out that I am inventorying - would he be adding gems to his house? Or perhaps simply ingesting them? Not my favorite, talk about an expensive meal. I was terrified that I was just going to be sitting on my bench, working away and he would run over my foot, or bite a toe or something. So I wondered where he might be hiding/ building his new home accented with 14kt yellow gold jump rings. Actually, I thought, if I was a rat, I would LOVE to live in GemsDirect! I thought about all the cool little rat sized hidey holes and fun places and spaces to go! What an adventure! Frankie was no dummie (yes I know), he came into the one shop in town where the owner was a sucker for/ has a big heart for all creatures great and small AND has the coolest hiding places. It reminded me of the book I read in school as a child, From the Mixed-Up Filed of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler. What a great book that was! Then I noticed a few nibble marks on some things on my bench; the dispenser on a container of avocado oil I use to re-hydrate stones like opal and emerald, a small chunk of beeswax I use to pick up small stones, the corner of a plastic desk organizer. I looked closer at the tiny teeth marks and thought back to the white rat I had as a pet back in Rhode Island, Benjamin. I totally softened, this rat is a little creature, a cute, small, furry being who deserves more than a glue trap or some other similar fate that all the people who had offered to help me get rid of him would likely subject him to. So I called my mother to borrow a Hav-a-hart trap, and before I left the store on Tuesday I put some peanut butter in the trap, set it out my my bench where I knew he frequented, and left for the night.

In the middle of the night I was bombarded with freak-out thoughts that this HUGE rat (he was much bigger in my mind than in reality) would throw his body from side to side in the trap, kicking it not only off the table I had placed it on, but into my oxygen cylinder, causing it to fall over and explode around the store breaking cases and walls, causing total destruction of my poor business. Shit, calm down Nicole. Maybe that rat isn't that big. Still, I was a bit concerned.

The next morning I awoke and got into town earlier than usual, to check out the status of the trap and my store. Sure enough, there was my little rodent friend, small, grey, furry and cute. And covered in shit, piss and peanut butter. He was cute! Actually, he is camera shy, and I am not sure if a he or a she, because everytime I tried to look at him or talk to him he ran to the far corner of the cage and hid. Oh well. So he may be a girl. The name Frankie works for either, and yes, I got the name from the book. So Frankie hung out with me at GemsDirect all day, I put his little cage in a quiet corner and offered some of my banana and some roasted chick peas (they had curry flavor though) and he wasn't interested in either. Smart rat, he knew his appetite was what had gotten him into this mess.
End of the day came and I pulled up my car to the shop door and put him in the back, packing up and heading to Lowry Hill where I thought he might like to live. On my way, I decided it made sense just to go show him to my mother and then let him loose in one of the fields over there in Sally's Fancy. As I drove, more freak-out thoughts that the cage in the back would tip over as I drove around the curves of Lowry Hill, Frankie would come bouncing out and attack the evil woman who has help him captive for nearly 24 hours. So I drove slowly and cautiously, navigating carefully around each curve and bump/ pothole in the road. And if you know the route from GemsDirect to the Great Pond, you know there are quite a few things to navagate around! No horses yesterday though. Mom wasn't home, but my step-dad was (they are neighbors and no longer married) so he came out to see the rat and we chatted for a bit. I drove up the road a bit to a bushy area and opened the cage. Frankie tore out of the cage with the cutest little rat-size leaps and bounds! I smiled as I watched him/her disappear in the tall grass. I think he/ she is a happier rat now, and we both had a bit of an adventure.

Oh yeah, Flat Nicole was at GemsDirect as well last week. She doesn't get a paragraph though, just a photo. The drawbacks of being simply 2 dimensional.


TerryC said…
Cute Rat, and thanks for thinking of us, but we've been catching and releasing plenty of our own lately.

And there are more who need to find new homes in the country.

So bring the trap back, pleeeze.

Oh, and cute flat Nicole, too.
TerryC said…
Ooops! Sorry! Just found where you left the trap.

It always amazes when we can find anything among all the crap around here!
Nicole said…
Yeah, I texted Michael about the trap, should have emailed probably :)
Hurricane Dean said…
Just last night I logged onto Facebook to see whether you were online and available to tell me how your rodent (Rat is much more degrading and much less PC! We all know how PC concious I am!) adventure ended! I imagined that you might have still had him somewhere feeding him and reading to him like a Guantanamo detainee!! Entertaining story.

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