The yard guys came this afternoon and for the 3rd week in a row I watched them blow the dead twigs into a corner in the backyard and leave them there. When Oscar came to the door for his money I took him into the backyard and told him that I watch his guys through the window every week and I've seen them blow the twigs into the corner and walk away. I asked him to please see that they are picked up and he was enthusiastically agreeable. At least I think he was, we have that language barrier thing going on.
Satisfied that I had handled the situation with a good balance of firmness and kindness, I came back inside, sat down at my computer desk in the kitchen and ate a piece of cold pizza from yesterday. Jayson was watching TV with his deaf guy earphones on and Taylor was at the barn so the house was peacefully quiet.
I heard a noise coming from the direction of the front door but I ignored it since it's been lightly raining off and on today and the wind picks up sometimes. About a minute later a bird whizzed past my head and went through the kitchen into the dining room, then the living room, the foyer and around again. It wasn't until after the second round that I finally got Jayson's attention. Mr. Bird landed on the clock over the TV and sat there for a few minutes to catch his breath. Mr. and Mrs. Green just stared at him in disbelief. Apparently I neglected to close the door all the way when I went out there to talk to Oscar.
When Mr. Bird took off again Jayson grabbed a blanket off the couch and told me to get another one so we could corral him toward the front door. We held our blankets high and accidentally corralled Mr. Bird straight up the stairs. He took a short tour of each room with Jayson slamming doors behind him. When he got back to the foyer, which is open to both the first and second floors, Mr. Bird flew into the big foyer window, knocked himself silly and fell to the floor at my feet.
Jayson screamed, "THROW THE BLANKET ON HIM!!!"
I replied, "I don't want to hurt him!" I could just see me breaking his little wing then spending $500 at the vet to fix him then accidentally domesticating him too much so that by the time he healed he would no longer be able to survive in the wild. Then I would give him his own room in the house and spend the next 6 years of my life catering to his every whim. Yeah, okay, that's happened before but it wasn't a bird it was a squirrel. And it wasn't a broken wing it was a toe that had to be amputated.
In the time it took for me to have that flashback, Mr. Bird came to his senses and took off for another tour of the house. When he got back to the foyer he hit the window again then flew into the living room and dropped back behind our 3-piece Billy bookcase corner unit. Unless he could go instantly vertical, Mr. Bird was stuck.
This gave us some time to do a little planning and prepping. I tacked some sheets over both doorways to the kitchen and family room which meant that Mr. Bird would be confined to the living/dining room and foyer. Well, and the whole upstairs since we couldn't exactly block that off.
Jayson had to take all of the books and knick knacks off of one of the shelving units to move it out of the way so we could get behind the corner unit. He told me to stand on the staircase and wave my blanket so Mr. Bird wouldn't go upstairs. I did as instructed while Jayson reached into the corner with a broom handle, scooting Mr. Bird out of his temporary confinement so he could take off and do a few more laps around the living room.
Jayson used his scary blanket to get Mr. Bird into the foyer but I don't think my blanket was scary enough because he flew right over me and headed upstairs again. Jayson had closed all the doors so when he saw he couldn't go very far up there he flew back into the foyer window and hit the floor again.
This time he must have seen the open door on his way down because he quickly regrouped and flew out the door. Jayson and I bumped fists and added Mr. Bird to the list of wild animals that have had to be extracted from the Green house.
I finished my pizza while Jayson finished putting together the stand I bought for the squirrel feeder I built. We just couldn't come up with a good hanging/mounting solution for it so I picked up a cedar mailbox post while I was at Ace Hardware getting my free paint this morning. It looks just like this only without the mailbox:
Jayson got it put together then wanted to put the squirrel feeder on top to make sure it would be secure. He drilled 2 holes and was about to drill more when I asked him if he really needed to do that in the family room. He thought he could probably finish it in the garage so he gathered up his handful of screws and bits and stuff and headed out the door.
A couple of seconds later he came back in and held up one foot that was bleeding pretty good from a puncture wound on the bottom. We managed to get it bandaged up without anyone (me) losing consciousness. I asked him what he stepped on and he said a drill bit. When he was carrying everything into the garage he dropped a drill bit then promptly stepped on it. That's my man!
I had hoped to be sharing a picture of the squirrel feeder on its new stand but that will have to wait just a little while longer. It's really a shame, too, because I made sort of a covered patio on the feeder with columns and everything. It's a colonial squirrel feeder.
Once Jayson was satisfied that the feeder and stand would work together, he took the feeder off and went outside to find a good spot for the stand. Taylor was home so she went out to help him. I heard a hammering noise, which I thought was a good sign, then a lot of laughter from Taylor, which I thought might not be such a good sign.
When they came inside Jayson asked if I still had the receipt for the stand. I wasn't sure what happened but Taylor was still giggling and muttering something about how Daddy broke it. I couldn't imagine how that could happen since the thing was made from solid cedar. I asked Jayson what happened and he said a piece fell off, and handed me this:
Taylor said he was hammering the top of the post into the ground (it has a metal stake attached to the bottom) and a random piece just fell off for no reason. It wasn't even near any of the places he had screwed into. That wood obviously came from a defective tree.
I will be making another trip to Ace tomorrow to return the mailbox/squirrel feeder stand and try to come up with a Plan B that won't fall apart, cause unnecessary blood loss, or be thwarted by wild animals in the house.