This has been a strange morning. Well, to be honest, it started out completely normal. It got strange around the time that Lily Ruth announced that she needed a diaper change.
I quickly realized that said diaper change was going to be one of those moments that not even a mother could love. I decided to do a moderate clean up followed by a bidet-type rinse under the bathtub faucet. To that end, I started the water so that it would be warm for my Darling's bum. While I ran the water, Lily Ruth came running in babbling and gesticulating wildly. The only thing that was clear was that I needed to follow her.
She bolted for the dining room with me in hot pursuit. We found Bing in Hunting Mode. I asked Lily Ruth what he was doing. She muttered something about 'bug'. I hauled the cat out from under the buffet, and prayed fervently that I wasn't about to come face-to-face with a giant mutant roach. I wasn't. It was a bird. That's right. A bird. In my house. Under my furniture. Oi.
I now had the triple task of reassuring the toddler, blocking the cat's access and catching the bird. As triple tasks go, it fell somewhere between 'piece of cake' and 'dammit'. I finally wrangled the bird into a corner, threw a dishtowel over it, and released it outside. It was then that I realized how said bird had gained access to our humble abode - I left the door to the garage open so that the damn cat could get back in. He bolted into the garage when I went out to empty the dryer. It's been pretty hot here, so I didn't want him to be trapped out there. He must have brought the bird back in with him :-/
Bing and I discussed why it's a bad idea to bring prey into the house. Well, actually I lectured him on why it's a bad idea to bring prey into the house, and he ignored me. Lily Ruth and I finally got around to that diaper change then finished our morning ablutions.
As I went about my normal 'we're leaving the house, let's restock the diaper bag' routine, I opened the door to the garage again. Bing bolted out there AGAIN. I rushed after him. Before I could grab him, he skittered up over Mt. Junkmore and hopped up on top of the extra fridge. From there it was a short leap into the attic crawlspace, and he was Gone, Daddy, Gone. I was stunned. I guess I now know where the bird came from...
Lily and I made a few half-hearted efforts at calling him back before we left. No luck. I left the door cracked again in case he made it back down.
I started looking for Bing when we got home. I checked all of his favorite spots and the extra weird spots that I have found him in on occasion. No Bing. I went out into the garage and called for him. No Bing.
I made Little Missy some lunch, and we ate while watching and discussing Sesame Street. Then Lily Ruth went into her room for 'mimi's' (Spanish slang for sleep). Once she quieted down, I thought that I heard Bing. I began softly calling to him, and searching the closets for trap doors into the 'attic' (that's in air-quotes because our roof is so flat that we do not have an attic. Just a space barely large enough for the air conditioning ducts...). No trap doors. No Bing. I finally sucked it up and climbed up on top of the extra fridge so that I could poke my head up and see where he had gone. That was creepy and disheartening. Almost nowhere to go (unless you can squeeze like a cat), and lots of old rat poison trays. Fantastic.
Still no Bing. I have 'heard' him twice more and hefted myself up on the refrigerator once more. Now I'm freaked out and bruised up AND I still can't find my cat. This is no good, you guys.
One hour later: HE'S BACK!!!! I was sacked out on my bed trying not to feel hysterical about my cat when I heard a noise that sounded an awful lot like a cat jumping down from the attic to the fridge... I raced to the garage, and THERE HE WAS! He's already back to doing what Bings do best: