I expected to see a spider or a cricket. Frankly, I often feel bad for the ones that foolishly make their way into my house. It would be more humane for me to just smash them with a shoe rather than make them go through the torture of being repeatedly picked up and spit out by Phoebe. She loves nothing more, I think.
Anyway, I digress. I slide the basket out of the way and see a little mouse about the size of a small golf ball huddled up in the corner. He seemed petrified (if a mouse can be), but at that moment I think I was MUCH more freaked out then he was. Flashes of cockroaches and mouse infestations went flying through my mind. This was the epitome of my lack of housekeeping skills. I screamed at the top of my lungs. Luckily Troy was there and came running to my rescue. He was sure that I had found one of the cats or the dog dead at my feet. Instead when he turned the corner and found me in a sobbing, frantic state, I can only imagine the things that went through his mind!
He assured me that he was there because of the cold weather we've been having and not because my house is toxic. He told me I need to calm down and asked me to get a shoe box. I retrieved one for him and then locked myself in my bedroom (with a towel under the door for safe-keeping) as he very bravely scooted the shoebox trapped mouse across the wood floor and out onto the front sidewalk.
When he was all done he told me I could come back and showed me the mouse cowering on the landing outside my house in a near comatose state.
Now my only option is to scrub every inch of the house from top to bottom. I better get started. It's a big house for one person.