Saturday, March 19, 2011

In Which Wildlife Interferes with Laundry

I've been meaning to blog for awhile, but felt like I didn't have much to blog about this week.  That's not to say that I haven't been busy, as I have, but not as much with knitting and such.  I had a lovely visit from my parents last week, so this week seemed a little slow in comparison, yet I'm not sure I accomplished much, and am not sure where the time went.  I did actually get some knitting done, but it's so hard to get excited about posting pictures of a grey shawl this time of year.

Fortunately, the sun did come out this week for a bit (I can tell because while we still have a ton of snow, the sidewalks and streets are drenched with melted snow), and spring seems to be starting, however slowly.  It's going up to +2 degrees Celsius today!  I'm so excited!

One sign of spring I hadn't been expecting came in the form of rustling from the dryer.  I was working on blocking my shawl, and was startled by the noise.  It didn't take too long to assess that the sounds were coming from the dryer vent, unfortunately about the point where it connected with the dryer, rather than near the point at which the critter might leave the house.  My husband was coming home soon, and good thing, as it was rather a two-person job to coordinate releasing the critter, at that time presumed to be a bird, squirrel, mouse, or possibly, as our imaginations ran wilder, even bat.

There may have been more patient and reliable ways of releasing the critter than what ended up happening, but we really needed to wash the diapers, so we needed to get that thing out of the dryer (where we discovered it was hiding, as it was not inside the pipe after all).  We taped an ice-cream bucket to the back of the dryer, and left it alone for a bit, hoping it would prefer to hang out in the bucket.

It turned out to be a bird (which is good, really, as from that list, the bird has the most motivation to leave the house rather than stick around).  We waited patiently for the bird to come back to the bucket (it kept going back and forth, then taking breaks and trying again).  At some point, while my husband was bringing our younger daughter upstairs (she was a bit loud for the bird's taste), our eldest and I  watched the sparrow slowly muster the courage to come out once more.  Rather than trapping the bird to bring it outside as planned, it turns out that I'm not as quick as a bird, and it escaped to flutter around what I tend to term the Alcove of Anarchy (though it's much better since we put in shelves, it's still rather a jumble of stuff).  The way to the wide-open back door was clear, but since it's upstairs and around the corner, we were not too surprised that it didn't quite spot it.

Chaos and confusion reigned for the next while, my youngest returned to shout "over here, birdie!", and we tried unsuccessfully to herd the poor thing out the door.  At last, it lit on the top of the laundry room door, letting us think we were getting closer to sending it out, only then the sparrow decided it was going to hide up in between the drop ceiling and the main floor.  It's possible that the bird then proceeded to leave through the large gap in the drop ceiling of the adjacent room and fly directly out the wide-open back door that would have been very visible from there, all while we stared at its last known location.  I really hope this did happen.  In the meantime, all we can do is leave out a tray of birdseed, and watch to see what happens.  At least we can do the laundry now without worrying about the bird.

I didn't think to get pictures of any bird-related antics, but since the shawl is finished blocking, I do have a few of it:

Presenting the Old Shale Shawl by Evelyn A. Clark, in Knit Picks Palette, Silver.  This was a quick, relaxing knit, used up stash yarn, and will look great with one of the dresses I want to wear to one of the Gaelic Football dinners this year.  At least that went well.


  1. Wow! I do hope the bird decided to leave.
    The shawl is beautiful.

  2. Thanks!

    We haven't heard from the bird since, and the sunflower seeds were not touched, so I'm thinking the odds are good that the bird found the open door (I do hope so)!