ROUS, part deux: le souris

I have no idea why the French, except I visited my friends Cyril and Dayne today at their lovely shop, and I always try to speak a few words of French with Cyril (not because we're pretentious--though sometimes we might be, just a soup├žon, you know) because he is actually French and is always encouraging me to not worry about feeling like an idiot and to try. So I do. And so I am trying to put a Continental gloss on my all-American problem: the country mouse. (Would that be un souris proven├žal??) In any case...

Tonight, I was about to "put the Babe to bed"--quotations necessary because the only person who puts that child to bed is, indeed, that child--the rest of us might die trying. She goes when she's damn well good and ready. But she's good-natured, of late, about going through the motions, even though we all know it's a charade, and in mere minutes, she'll be up and about, asking for snuggles, cuddles, water and a trip to our room to recover from the first of many bad dweams. Anyway--I was about to begin the performance when motion on her bedroom floor caught my eye. As with so many unpleasant things: I knew instantly what I was seeing, even as I forced myself to look closer. Indeed, I had seen a grey ROUsualSize scoot across her floor, towards the pile of books, games, toys and assorted other VERY NECESSARY STUFF in front of her bookcase. Vous (hey, more French!) the au pair heard me shriek, and I told her what I'd seen. Sotto voce I also said, "Go get the cat."

Now our cat, as I've written before, is less a mighty hunter than a kind of Mutual of Omaha Wild Kingdom nature aficionado. In our sixteen months here, I've noticed two (2) kills notched on his belt. Err, collar. But I can hope. Vous tracked him down, and to his credit, he instantly stationed himself in front of the bookcase, ears and whiskers twitching, head moving to the beat of some small mousey movements imperceptible to human ears. And again, to his credit, he didn't loll about, lick his rear, and then leave the room. As far as I know, he's still there, the mouse is still there and the Babe is in my room, playing with Kiki and Finn (aka her feet, or the "foot-babies") and refusing the unnecessary time waster that she considers sleep.

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