Today I have a true crime mystery for you. It's a tale of greed that led to a hunt for the thief.
Let me set the scene. Our garage, like many others, is a place where things that don't have any other place to go, get stored. We have a work bench with tools on racks above it. We have several metal shelves along the back wall where assorted items are stashed. There is a pile of boxes, flattened and tied together, a pile of Rob's old sketch pads, little pots of paint to touch up walls in various rooms, a stack of old towels for drying dogs or polishing the car. You get the picture. I also have an area where I groom the dogs and where I keep their food.
There is an old bookcase where I keep grooming items, and on the top of the case is an open plastic bin where I store dog biscuits so that I can grab them easily as treats, but the dogs can't reach them to help themselves.
On Saturday morning as I was heading for the area where the dog food is kept, I noticed a screwdriver on the floor. It seemed odd because they're usually in their little rack over the workbench, but I assumed that Rob had dropped it and not noticed.
On Sunday morning I discovered an artist's paintbrush on the floor in almost the same place. The brushed are kept in the drawer of the grooming table and Rob hasn't been painting lately, so after feeding the dogs I asked him if he'd been using the brush. He hadn't.
Tuesday morning at six I let everyone into the back yard. When they come back in they go back to sleep for a couple hours before eating so I went to get biscuits for them but the container was empty, totally empty and looked as if it had been wiped clean. No biscuits, no crumbs. I went upstairs and asked Rob if he had taken the last biscuits out of the container and he didn't know what I was talking about. I told him there had been three biscuits and crumbs left but now the container was empty. We assumed that we had a mouse.
Last night, Tuesday, when I put the dogs to bed, there were ten pounds of milkbone biscuits in the container and a sticky trap just above the container. This morning at six when I went downstairs with the dogs, I went into the garage first. I thought I might find a mouse in the trap on the floor and didn't want the dogs to get it. There was no mouse. The container was empty except for the trap, which was also empty. The creature had taken ten pounds of dog biscuits and there wasn't a crumb left.
I ran back up and got Rob. I was afraid there was a snake living in the garage. What mouse could eat ten pounds of dog biscuits in one night? We sent the dogs to the yard, moved the car out and started emptying the shelves. Behind the boxes were piles of dog biscuits. Stuck between pages of the sketch books were dog biscuits, between paint cans were dog biscuits. We found just about ten pounds of dog biscuits but no mouse and no droppings. How many trips across the room must he have made carrying his prizes.
As much as we hate snap traps, we set several of them. There are three in the shelves where we found his stash and one set on the cover of the biscuit container. Yes, it now has a cover. I'm sending Rob to the garage ahead of me tomorrow morning. I'm not sure I want to see what may be waiting there.