No. It was a bird. A tiny swallow. My best guess is that it came down the chimney. I can't believe Ashlie caught it.
The little birdie escaped the paws of death and flitted up to the ceiling, banging its wings against the walls and picture frames and lampshades...generally having a major freak-out, birdie-style. I, of course, in a moment of sheer genius, grabbed my camera.
Soon enough, I realized that as cute as he was sitting up there on my curtain rod, I really didn't want bird poop in the house, so I got the broom and forced him out the door. This was quite a fiasco in and of itself. I was quite worn out from the exertion of it all by the time I finally slammed the front door on his little birdy butt.
Not 10 minutes later, there was another bird in the house. I became aware of its presense when, again, the cat went ballistic. This time, the bird thought he'd make a game out of dive-bombing my head. He seemed a little angry. Instead of reaching for the camera, I had the presense of mind to close all the doors to the room, trapping him in the family room and keeping him out of the rest of the house. Again with the broom, I kept batting at the bird while dodging his Russian Roulette attempts, and eventually brushed him out the door again.
Good. Not even nine o'clock, and I've worked out.
At 10, Michael came over and we joined in a conference call for a training class we're taking. About 20 minutes into the hour-long call, again with the bird. I jumped up and flew toward the front room to close the French Doors before he could fly into the family room where were were on the phone. But before I got there, the bird slammed into the window. At full speed, he flew across the room, and WHACK!! And then, THUD, as he fell to the floor. The cat stood over him and then began sniffing and pawing. "Do NOT shred this bird on my floor!" I hissed. The bird was breathing. I could see his little throat puffing in and out, in and out. But he was very clearly knocked out cold.
I got the broom again and swept him toward the door, out onto the porch, and off the porch into the garden. He was still breathing. I brought the cat back inside, where she proceeded to stand at the door and cry her head off. She wanted that bird.
Later, I discovered that the bird didn't make it. Must've been one heck of a brain injury. Silly bird. I half believe it was the same bird who kept coming down the chimney over and over, because after that, no more birds attempted it.
Darren buried it in our backyard, under the arbor where we know we'll never plant anything. I thought the boys would be enthralled, but they totally didn't care.
Or so I thought. Tonight, Darren came home to find this: a grave marker created and erected by Aidan. I didn't help him. I didn't even know he'd done it. "Ded black berd. We found it on Aprail 10, 2007"
Bye bye, Birdie.