Shut That Door! 

Image source: Google Images (Nicktoons network) 


Before now, fear of Lassa fever was the beginning of wisdom. People throwing away bags of rice bought with hard-earned money because rodents (Rats, mouse) took a bite. I know it’s unbelievable, but it happened. 

But since news went out about its prevalence, my level of tolerance went up a bit. I decided we could live in peace together; just make sure your (rodent) fur is not pitch black, your mouth is not pointed with sharp whiskers and you don’t smell, then we’re good!

And one more thing, don’t run through my legs in the dark. Oh! one more thing, do not make squeaky noises at night and please do not scatter my things!

You see how not burdensome the terms are? You would not believe that these rats could not abide by them.

Please be the judge, what should I have done?

If illegal immigrants were misbehaving, well, what do you expect?  I went “Donald Trump” on them of course.

I was like “Lil dudes, we’ve had enough! Y’all are getting deported!” 

I considered my options though; I can not have myself rushing to work in the morning and slipping my feet inside my pumps only to hit the head of a decaying house rat.

Yuck! Ewwwww, gross. Iyanma!

So I decided to use the sticky page hard cover notebook rodent traps. 

The first night was fruitful. There was a catch.

But due to tight schedules, I left the trap there ’til I returned from work.

This went down when I was away to work, methinks: Considering the proximity of the scene, fellow colleagues passed by — saw “omo iya (brother/sister)” squeaking, shitting, and pissing all at once, struggling to break free — wagged their tiny heads and walked on praying verse four of Psalms twenty three.

When I returned, I got rid of the catch and set it for another. 

The next night was a set up. They meant business. It was a batch by batch. One will enter, make scattering sounds to wake me up. I woke up, flashed a light, it jumped out of its hiding and played a “Jerry” stunt on me. You remember the side slide that “Jerry” does across a corner or slippery floor when “Tom” is on a chase? Yeah. I saw it live. They took turns doing this and on the third round, I gave up, left the light on and turned it to vigil.

I will not bother telling you I kept changing the position of the sticky page thingy. I really want to forget the part where I placed it exactly at the point it lands before flicking the light on; the “Jerry” stunt works anytime. No wonder “Tom” always looks like a loser. I felt like him that night. 

The next day, I placed more sticky book traps around the house.

One night, walking through the sitting room, I saw one that just escaped finding it difficult to run because of the sticky thingy on its furs. And you know, because I’m a sucker for puppy eyes, I let it get away.

..

Why am I telling you this story? Those rats, they knew there was a threat, and it was a matter of time before their smartarse stunts fail them. They saw how the other rat suffered and met its untimely death (yes, I butchered it). They knew it is just by chance the one that escaped could live to tell the story. So they left. Maybe for a short break. Maybe to return after the traps expire. It doesn’t matter,  what mattered was to leave till it was safer. Not minding their love for my packet of “Good Morning oats”,  or crayfish or pepper. They left. 

The point is… it seems these rats are smarter than some humans. Whatever happened to taking a break or leaving an exploiting or abusive relationship? If it isn’t a WIN/WIN, then it is not worth it! Be smart!

Hope I’m not sounding like those motivational speakers that say “if a rat can do it, then you can”?

Cos that’s exactly the way I want to sound now.

Some excuses we give for staying are not worth our safety, health and even emotional stability. Maybe we won’t need all these if you have sincerely answered this question “do you love yourself?” Do you?

Don’t be giving excuses, Shut that door! 

Author: Kolawole Oluwanifemi — For SpeechCathedral 

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