The back story is that my son somehow managed to find one trapped in a storage building at his place of work, and being the lover of animals he is, he felt it best if he bring it home to observe for a few days and then figure out how to secure its future welfare. A suitable habitat was created and, it was thought, the cute little critter was secured. At least until it somehow became un-secured, and now my garage, which was already packed to the brim with everything from family Christmas decorations to the items my son and his new bride had brought with them in the move from Idaho to Oregon, was this little weasel’s (pun intended) playground.
After much fruitless searching, I was left wondering if perchance, our furry friend had somehow managed to scale the shelving along the wall and make it up into the crawl space above the garage and perhaps from there into the attic space over the rest of the home. Visions of insulation-turned-mink-condominium combined with pest-control and insulation bills began swirling through my mind.
At one point, as I found myself creeping through a darkened garage, welding-gloved-hands holding a flashlight in hopes of picking up the reflection in my mammalian houseguest’s eyes, I actually opened the garage doors simply hoping Mr. Mink would catch a whiff of freedom in the night air and high-tail it out of my life. But then I remembered my son’s caution that our two cats, Zoe and Sassy, might make a tempting treat on the mink’s menu, and quickly reversed course.
In fact, I resolved to give up the search and stop stressing over what “might” happen. I put the mink out of my mind and moved on with my week.
Meanwhile, my son performed daily, searches of the garage. He even searched underneath the entire house. One day passed, then another. I believe it was on the third day that my wife and daughter made their way to the empty drum that had been the mink’s home. Leaning over to peer inside, and yet not in the least-wise expecting to find anything, my wife got quite a start when our wayward weasel popped up to meet her gaze!
And so, after late night search parties, daily excursions, and a fair amount of stress, the mink simply meandered his way back “home.” Crisis averted. I think. We most likely will find his little paw-prints (and certainly some other surprises) in cartons and crannies for years to come.