Husband has always wanted a grandfather clock so I finally got him one. It's quiet, though, and doesn't require winding. Good wife! Sorry I've been gone but what a time we had last week. Tuesday night we ended up sleeping in the car. It started with the smell of a dead squirrel which I was convinced had happened in a wall to spite me for my "Go away! Move out!" commands. Husband was on call as he is for all dead animal related occurrances like the baby bunny the cats put on our steps last night. The kids and I were having a slumber party with popcorn and candy, watching Woody Woodpecker in bed. I kept getting up to sniff. "Don't you smell anything?" They barely even looked my way. Three different times I was under the bed looking for a dead mouse. Sniffing up the fireplaces, in my closet, all thorough their room, sniffing the walls like I might detect wall studs in a curious Casapinka-ish way (couldn't you see that?)
(To orient you to the grandfather clock, it's on the same wall as the flower mirror)...I finally gave up sniffing after getting up and down and 3 more Woody episodes had gone by. I settled in to knit and watch more cartoons. I finally put everyone to bed and fell asleep with Junior who still thinks I'm amazing and wanted me to snuggle with him. At 1 am I woke up, nauseated with the stink of death. I sniffed some more walls and went downstairs. Nothing. It was like a will-o-the-wisp and when I think I'd imagined it, it would hit me again with a brief waft of stench. I smelled our drains, our trash, even the bathtub! The cats wouldn't fess up to any foul play so I sat in bed and tried to distract myself. I typed into Google, "How to localize a dead animal in your wall" and the sweet ol' internet, offering the best mom advice out there said, "Dear Tired Mom, you aren't crazy: Sometimes natural gas smells more like a dead animal than rotten eggs." I didn't believe it but I went downstairs and there was the burner from dinner on, hissing out gas. Hours of gas!
Realzing Casapinka was about to blow, I quietly put my knitting in my bag, and got on my shoes. I sat down and made reservations on Expedia for a hotel nearby, figuring I'd already used the internet so I should be ok. I got up Bubbles and then Junior who, wouldn't you know had stripped himself naked (his favorite state) so had to be dressed without turning on any lights. "Mommy, if it's an emergency, I should just go naked!" he hissed at me. Nice try, buddy. We quietly left the house, enduring a 10 minute car ride of gleeful armpit farts by Junior in time to the Woody Woodpecker laugh, a chap delighted to find himself on a midnight adventure.
Alas, when we got to the hotel it was full. No soft bed for tired, sniffed-out Pink and her bedraggled entourage. It turns out I had made reservations for that date but 12 hours from then. Everything was full in sunny, palm tree encrusted, Providence, Rhode Island. Kudos to Expedia on the full refund for a non-refundable purchase, via a conversation with India, and not even a request for a refund, but one just given! Finding no vacancies, we finally parked in the back of a Holiday Inn Express parking lot and after some "Mommy, make him STOP!" moments, Junior was placed in the "way back" of the station wagon with my sweatshirt, a bird with the cover put over its cage. Bubbles started to cry about sleeping in a car, which required some tough love on my part, but she finally went to sleep, happy to actually be allowed in the front seat of the car.
When we got home again, Casapinka was free of fumes and intact. We were tired so we ate more candy, watched more Woody Woodpecker and just lounged around for the rest of the day, happy our home wasn't in ashes, and a bonus worthy of the tooth fairy: The wall won't have to be chopped open to remove animal entrails.