The Hunt

I’m going to take a break from the more serious stuff I write about to tell a story worth sharing. Last year I moved into a house in the Vine Neighborhood of Kalamazoo with my best friend and two other guys. Living with Nathan is one of the best things I’ve ever experienced in my life because we get each other, and we know each other well enough to where living together hasn’t destroyed our friendship.

A couple months back when the polar vortex hit Michigan, and I’m sure a large portion of northern USA, Nathan and I were both home from work seeing as at the time we both worked jobs where we were required to be outside ninety percent of the time. It was around nine o’clock in the morning and I had just texted Nathan about doing some gaming, when he calls me.

Something to understand about Nathan is the man never calls me. We text or we see each other in person. That’s it. So when I get a phone call from Nathan I get suspicious (rightfully so) right away. I answered the phone and gave a very sleepy “hello”. My buddy Nate though was wide awake and quickly responded with “wanna go hunt a squirrel?”

So now it’s time for the backstory. For months ever since winter started, we had been dealing with a squirrel infestation in the house. You think hearing mice is bad? Think again, bud. When squirrels are dropping nuts and scraping the heck out of your walls for hours and rarely are silent, you start to question your sanity and whether time in jail would be worth burning your house down.

During a relaxing evening of Dungeons and Dragons, Nate and I heard a squirrel sassily scampering around on the ceiling tiles of our kitchen. Running out to the scene, Nate grabbed a roll of paper and poked one of the tiles. The tile, though, was water damaged and thus broke with the little pressure he applied to it, dropping the crumbly tile, dust, and walnuts onto Nate.Fast forward back to the polar vortex. We hadn’t heard anything for a while from the squirrels, until Nathan had called me. I quickly told him I’d be right out, and threw on pajama pants and a hoodie as quickly as I could, and brought with me two beach towels to try and have something to snag the rascally squirrel with. Rushing out of my room and down the hall the first glimpse of Nathan I see was a sight to behold. The man was standing just outside his doorway, pajama pants and a bathrobe on, shirtless beneath, donning gloves and brandishing a knife.

Relaying to me how he had just got up and had been lying in bed, and how this small red squirrel was bouncing all over the bed and his room, the hunt was afoot.

Both of us began to sneak down the stairs. But when you live in a house that’s most likely 100 years old, there’s no sneaking. Only creaking and two guys looking like idiots going down the stairs. Upon arriving on the main level of our house, everything was silent. And then we saw the little devil scurry into the kitchen at the sight of us. Running after it, we saw it dive behind the stove, trying to hide in fear for its life. Nathan and I shook the stove and watched it run all over the counters, until finally in a last ditch effort, the little guy ran into the bathroom. Slamming the door on it, taking a very quick second to breathe, I was about to ask Nate what the game plan was, when he shouted “I’m going in!” and did just that.

What transpired next is not what you’d think. At first glance, when you see Nathan in person, if you don’t know him you wouldn’t want to meet him down a dark alley. And then you have me, thin, long haired, and a hippy. We would make a great couple. You’d think if anyone would be screaming high pitched it would be me, right?

From the other side of the door I couldn’t see anything of course so I had to rely on sound to understand what was going on. The first red flag was the fact that Nathan hadn’t turned on the light in the bathroom yet. So he was stuck in a small bathroom in the dark with a wild squirrel. And the second thing is that the light switch is in the most inconvenient place to reach as well. So it was probably a good 15 seconds before the light came on. All I can hear are high pitched yelps and yells and thrashing around.

I’m not about to open the door because for starters I don’t want to be in the same place we were about 5 minutes prior to what’s happening now because we hadn’t pinned down the squirrel. But part of me wants to open the door to help. But another side of me is enjoying hearing Nathan practically fist fight something a sixteenth of his size.

Suddenly, all is silent and still. The doorknob to the bathroom slowly turns, and from the light emerges Nathan, squirrel in hand. The first words from his lips will always be framed in my head: “I thought it was going to bite my nipple”.

After telling me all that happened in the 30 or 40 seconds he was in the bathroom, we stood with a death grip on that squirrel for a solid five to ten minutes before deciding to release it to the wild again, because in a polar vortex what the heck are you supposed to do with a little guy like that?

And thus the hunt was finished. See photo attached for proof!

As always, let me know if there’s anything you want to read about!

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