Rat prevention measuresI didn’t get much sleep last night! There was a catalogue of things that happened. Firstly, the young college guard (who stops by most nights to say hello and who has started telling me about his marital problems – I think!) came by as usual, but told me that he had a key to my kitchen/bathroom door and asked if he could have a shower – his ‘best friend’, the previous volunteer used to let him. I didn’t feel I could refuse, but was very uncomfortable about the situation.

The next thing that happened was that I was woken by my mobile phone ringing. It was only about 10pm, but I was fast asleep – life in the regions! It was my link person from VSO who regularly phones to check if I have any problems and to let me know what is going on. I did mention the shower situation to him – he didn’t think it was right either.

I got back to sleep, being slightly paranoid about any gaps in my clothing that would allow bed bugs in. Then worse happened!! I was awakened by animal scrabbling sounds. I didn’t see anything, but my highly attuned senses make me think that I had a rat in my bedroom. Well, that was it … no more sleep for me – I kept the light on all night. I did eventually drift off after 6, once it was light outside. Only to be woken before my alarm, by my mobile phone and someone insisting that they had phoned Susan’s number!

When I told my colleagues at the College about my rat problem, they thought it was highly amusing. I came home after work and fixed up a mosquito net (so that a rat cannot climb on me in the night!), tucked a blanket under the lounge front door, which has a 2 inch gap, and cried. I considered phoning another volunteer to cry on their figurative shoulder, but I am not sure it would do any good as they cannot do anything to help! Tonight, when I go to bed, I will tuck another blanket under my bedroom door – and just hope that I do not have to go to the loo in the night. For added security, I think I will leave a lamp on again – I am sure that would scare vermin off!

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