Ho, ho, hold on to that thought
“One of the advantages of being disorderly is that one is constantly making exciting discoveries.”
A.A. Milne, of “Winnie the Pooh” fame, penned that quote long ago, but I’ll bet you a box of chocolates he stole it from his wife when he overheard her whispering what he thought was an optimistic comment.
In all likelihood, she was glaring with gritted jaw at the mangled wad of Christmas ornament hangers she was holding in one hand while raising an eyebrow to the “exciting discovery” she’d found.
Mouse poop in the old trunk of Christmas decorations.
The last page of “O, The Oprah Magazine,” where Oprah Winfrey writes her column, “What I Know For Sure,” is the first thing I flip to every month. I am always on the prowl for sage advice—and her perspective rarely disappoints.
The December column was all about pleasure and gratitude, how to recognize it every day—however small and even when things really stink.
So, of course, it got me to thinking. What pleasure is there in mouse poop found in the trunk of Christmas decorations?
And upon further investigation, when one finds treasured keepsakes born of the elementary school era when Daughters #1, #2, and #3 came home with ornaments made of conflicting colours of construction paper and too much glitter (shredded into confetti in the trunk of Christmas decorations), where, oh where, is the gratitude in that?
This “exciting discovery” raised more ruckus than my surprise, most noted by the expletives that spilled over my lips and drowned out the Perry Como Christmas tunes playing on the stereo.
The poor dogs, who rate the pleasure in their world by human intonation, ran and hid under my bed, which, at 40 inches off the floor, doesn’t provide much of a bunker for such episodes of shell shock.
But coaxing them out made me smile—and fixed everything in their life in a New York minute.
Meanwhile, I dreaded digging further into the decorations to assess damage done by a country mouse. I kept everything I loved about Christmas in that trunk and aside from my search for the stupid hangers, I shouldn’t even have been digging in there until we decorated the tree in a couple of weeks.
It was tradition for all of us to be present when the decorations were drawn out every year.
Lo and behold, the little pest had been coming and going for some time, with evident layers of Christmas crumbs to back up his crimes. Paper bells from Grade three were done for. A popcorn ball dotted with red glitter now looked like Swiss cheese while the little red bows tied to a dozen tiny antique china bells were history.
Pleasure wasn’t gaining any ground, but then, neither was the rodent who’d been holding up in the holidays for some time.
However, I derive some pleasure in the fact that I am not afraid of mice. As an aside, this bypass of rodent panic was not passed down to me through the family tree. Some members of my clan would rather be covered with spiders than catch a glimpse of a scurrying mouse.
So when the little #@!&?, who had been burying himself deeper in the mix as I took things out and finally had his fill of terror, jumped out of the trunk and onto the hall floor, it startled me little.
But it also woke up “Ozzie” the cat.
It’s been a pleasure doing business with you, kitty kitty.
Ho, ho, hold on to that thought