Do you know how to save a life? Well I do. I’m not bragging, but I can now add life saver to my life resume.
I was walking home from the gym last night, listening to a book, minding my business, feeling high from pushing my body to the its limits, when I saw an injured mouse in the middle of the sidewalk. My first reaction was to foot move it off the sidewalk so it didn’t get trampled and it could die with a little dignity. But I said, to myself, Adrienne wait! Check for signs of trauma. I investigated further and opened up my flashlight app. I shone my fake flashlight on its body and saw no blood. I thought, No visible signs of trauma. This little guy may have a chance! I reacted quickly and took my sweatshirt off and tried to move the little guy. It was stunned. It didn’t move a muscle. I bunched up my sweatshirt and cradled it in my hand for the last half mile walk to my house. I could feel its little heart racing and body shivering. It was like holding a teeny tiny chihuahua.
I had to keep telling myself that I was holding a mouse and not a rat. Because if it was a rat I would’ve flung it into the road.
I got to my house and set it on our patio table out back. I unfurled my sweatshirt and it still didn’t try to run away. I walked inside to get some gloves, came back out and it was still there sitting in the middle of the sweatshirt. I picked up little Virgil Algernon Bailey to inspect his tiny body. From the looks of it, his back legs were lame. I think he fell out of a tree before I found him. At this point, the Masshole wants to build Virgil a wheelchair made from one of her god son’s Hot Wheels. I told her to slow her roll. “We need to nurse him back to health.” I started to imagine a Rocky-like movie montage of us and Virgil going through a battery of exercises to strengthen and heal that leg. I stupidly wondered what we should feed him. “Babe it’s a mouse, it’ll eat shit, if we feed it to him.” Harsh as she was, she was right. So I grabbed a few morsels of cat food. Ironically nourishing him with food from the beings that would love to eat Virgil.
After scarfing down some food and drinking some water, we put Virgil in a shoebox. The Masshole wanted to leave him a bottle cap or thimble of water in the box (I think she just got caught up in the adorableness of things in miniature). We made him a tiny condominium, equipped with a blanket, bits of cat food and a tiny water bowl. We shut the lid and said good night to Virgil.
I came outside this morning to check on our tiny patient and he was gone. No signs of forced entry by the feral cats or raccoons in the neighborhood. Virgil left on his own accord. He shit his brains out in the box and then decided it was time to go. I had such a sense of pride. I scanned the field beyond our backyard and there he was! He was standing tall on those once broken back legs. He saluted me, chucked up a tiny deuce and then vanished.