Mr Life is a good-natured chap. Give him his dinner followed by a sofa, a crossword, a cat and "Midsomer Murders" on the tv and you won't get much trouble from him.
On Friday night, we'd just sat down to our dinner when the phone rang next door in the dining room. Mr Life got up to answer it. It was Daughter 2, who'd left the house a few minutes ago in the car. It had started to rain heavily and she just wanted to check that the black shadow she'd seen galloping towards the house was indeed our gentleman cat, Sirius (as featured in the picture. Butter wouldn't melt.) His sister, Cassie, was already home for the night. Just that moment, Sirius came through the cat flap so Mr Life was just assuring her that yes, all was well, when he noticed that Sirius had brought in a friend. A mouse friend. Mr Life yelled, I leapt up from my meal and we both started chasing Sirius, who took refuge under the dining room table. This is a table with four legs and a crossbar, not to say various chairs tucked underneath, so extracting an alarmed cat who is clutching an even more alarmed mouse is not an easy task.
However, after a while he dropped the mouse and ran back into the kitchen, so I shut the connecting door - Cassie was also in the kitchen, which left us with just the mouse. Mr Mouse was unfortunately not at all grateful for his deliverance. He appeared to be quite unharmed physically by his capture but a certain amount of post-traumatic stress seemed to have set in. We probably didn't help by pursuing him round the furniture for some time. Mr Life was by now... slightly... exasperated. He had not had one bite of his dinner yet.
"I wonder," I suggested, "if we could get a box with a hole and maybe the mouse would run into the hole?" (I think I'd got this idea from Rachel of Slow Lane Life, who is a seasoned mouse-rescuer.) Mr Life didn't exactly call me an idiot but he did cast doubt on the efficacy of this tactic, so we continued for a while in our attempt to corner the mouse.
Then I tried the box thing. "Why would that work?" enquired Mr Life - well, I hesitate to suggest that he said this scathingly, but.... At this point, the mouse ran into the box and we put the box outside and that was that.
Till we went back into the kitchen to find Sirius on the table, scoffing Mr Life's dinner.