The moment I swung the front door open I knew something was wrong. I could feel it. As I stepped into the entry way, a chill spread across my chest. My senses became super sharp. The hair on the back of my neck tingled—and not in a good way.

I’m not alone. I know it.

Frozen in place, still clutching the door knob, my eyes dart back and forth as I quickly scan the living room. Lamps and plants and decorations have been moved around. Strangely around.   My candle lamp is on the floor, the lovely crochet doily mom made is twisted up and dangling over the edge of the sitting table. Magazines, coasters, pictures, all “rearranged”. But the TV is still there. So is the stereo.


I release my death grip on the door knob and take a big breath. Crap, I can’t find my phone. I reach into my purses “special compartment” and get a hand on my “backup”.

“Hello? Who’s there?” I call out as I slowly tip toe through the living room to the dining room. My curtains are moved around, but the windows are closed. I don’t hear anything above me upstairs. Nothing seems off kilter in the dining room. Then I turn the corner and look in the kitchen.


The dogs food bag is ripped up and empty, cooking utensils, miscellaneous dishes, and appliances are scattered on the floor.Invader2 Honey is strewn from one end of the kitchen to the other from ripped up individual serving packages laying everywhere. On the counters, the window sills, the floor….and peanut butter, too. Several cupboard doors are open, and items have been knocked down onto the counters. Rice, spices, cups, drink mixes and more. Every inch of counter space is an absolute mess.


There is a somewhat ‘fresh’ black bird wing on the floor in front of the fridge.


Then I spot something on the bakers rack. Black droppings. Not from a mouse, but much bigger, from something else. I’m not sure what it is. Safety on, I make a mad dash for upstairs.


The hand-made, ceramic glass container that used to be on a shelf about 6 foot high is now busted into a million pieces on the floor. The tooth brushes and tooth paste it held, now scattered on the floor behind the toilet. Towels are pulled off of their shelfs, everything has been tossed about. Everything in the bathroom has been handled. I find a toothbrush in the guest room, by the balcony door. Clothes have been pulled off of their hangers. And oh, how about that? More honey! On the floor, next to the empty honey packs. And more droppings. But the balcony door is still closed tight.

Where is it?

I feel sick, and panicked. There’s a good chance the intruder is still inside. No doubt with the rest of that bird.

I race to the master bedroom. Nick-knacks are tipped over. More droppings. I look at my bed and feel pangs of grossed out-ness as I imagine what may have gone on, on top of my Newfoundland Caribou hide. And then there’s the guest room bed. Holy Hanna. I will have to strip down everything in my house and have it disinfected.

I rush down the stairs, through the house, and down to the basement. Another complete disaster. My super keen ears are listening hard for any sign of life besides me. As I creep through the family room back towards the stairs, thoughts race through my head. Thoughts like;

“I can’t bring the dogs into the house”.

“We can’t sleep here tonight.”

“Everything is ruined!”


“Where is it? What is it? How did it get in? How long has it been here?”

Suddenly loud, crashing, thrashing, scratching scrambling sounds boom out of the furnace room!


Instinctively I barrel up the stairs, through the house, and burst out the front door at breakneck speed, just in time to see my neighbors returning home with their RV, which I immediately chase after down the block crying out;

“Help! Help, there’s something in my house!”

They saw me. did a whole lot of other people…eh-hem….

Within minutes, along come the neighbors. Randy, decked out in his leather chaps, slinging a 22 long rifle over his shoulder, with June at his side.

“Let’s go see.”

We enter with caution. They are shocked at the kitchen disaster, confused at the bird wing, and relieved I still have my valuables. Rat? Raccoon? We can’t tell what would do all this damage!

We head to the basement, whispering back and forth, sneaking down the stairs. All is quiet in the furnace room. “But I know it’s down here. I just know it!” We walk through the basement, end to end, noticing things broken, knocked over and rearranged. It was even on top of my sewing machine, leaving droppings.

No sign of life.

We proceed to search the house, room by room, only to come up empty. Somehow we find humor in the midst of all the honey packets and droppings. I film the ‘walk-through’ for proof, and posterity. By now the dogs are pretty tired of sitting in the truck. It’s confirmed, we will spend the night in the toy hauler.

“You need to call the police! They’ll send someone.” June urges.

Great. Can’t wait to see sirens blaring and lights flashing.


So I begrudgingly call 911 and sheepishly explain my situation. I beg the dispatcher to keep things quiet. No need to get the neighborhood in a bundle. Within minutes there are 2 squads in front of the house, and four Officers are at my door, ready to begin a search.   How awkward for them to see this creepy, gross mess amidst animal mounts, trophies, pictures and shooting paraphernalia displayed here and there. They were clearly entertained. I won’t go into details but,

Let’s just say it was a good tension reliever.

June, Randy, me and the four cops have finally made it to the kitchen. I get behind the biggest Officer, and we all started heading for the basement, then one of the Officers behind me stops me in my tracks.

“You should wait up here. We’ll let you know what we find.”

He steps around me, and closes the door to the basement behind him. Okay. The three of us stood at the top of the stairs and listened intently while the Officers banged on the walls, clanged the pipes, bumped and pushed and shook things throughout the basement and made enough noise and commotion to scare anything out of its wits or hiding place.

They returned up the stairs.

It was a fruitless search.

“Sorry, we can’t find anything.”

“But I KNOW it’s down there in the furnace room.”

“Look at all these trophies. You must be a good shot.”

“Please don’t leave me with this thing in my house.”


The four Officers made their way single file, past us and out the front door. We stood there, feeling abandoned and frustrated.

I looked at my friends. “I know it’s down there.”

“Of course it is. The cops made so much noise it probably went into deep hiding.” Randy replied.

“Let’s go look again.”

We crept down the stairs one more time. June and I quietly stepped into the family room, while Randy canvassed the furnace room with his heavy leather gloves on.

“June. Can you bring me something? Like a broom or something to poke in the corners with?” Randy calls out.

She was not about to get too close to that furnace room opening and I was right behind her. “Randy I’m not getting in there. Here.” She reaches out to hand him an ice pick I’d grabbed earlier.

Suddenly in an instant, all hell breaks loose—Randy cries out, June is falling backwards, screaming and I see—clearly–a great big bushy beast planted firmly on her chest, nose to nose with her, gripping her bosom tight as she screams bloody murder with arms flailing. I’m screaming, she’s screaming, and Randy is trying to gain his composure while screaming, and then it leaps off of her, onto his leather chap leg, then dives back into the depths of the furnace room!


We three clamor up the stairs in a frantic hot mess, slamming the door behind us, and make our way through the house to the front door.

“You gotta call the cops back!”

“Yes, YES!”

“Did you see that? It was a giant squirrel!”

“It was on me! It was ON me!”

“Well it bounced off my chaps!”

“Oh my gawd! Oh!”

“Hi, I called a few minutes ago about an animal break in? Can you please send the Officers back? Please? We found it! It just attacked my neighbor.”

We burst out the front door to discover the cops had never left. Pretty sure they were doing some sort of coin flip to see who would have to go back in. The very young Animal Control Officer was already getting his cage out of his vehicle. I ran to him, telling him it was a giant squirrel in the furnace room and he should bring his lasso pole thing too. Maybe a tranquilizer gun, just in case. His eyes became quite large.

The four of us went back into the house. The young Officer led the way, followed by Randy, then me, then June. She had had enough close encounters.  The Officer admitted he was new with the force. This was going to be his first “animal extraction”. June and I looked at each other. Gulp. He proceeded down the stairs, and with the wide eyed look of unabashed determination he stepped into the furnace room. Randy closed the door behind him.

“Clang! Ufff! Crash! Whattthe…. Uhh…Crash….clink…..Slap! Slam! Oh! Almost! Dang…..uhhhh! Clang!” The battle went on behind the closed door for a good 10 minutes. We had high hopes that the Officer was getting the upper hand, but truthfully it didn’t sound too good.


Umph…. Uhh…Crash!….Clink!…silence…….silence…….Slam!…ugh…..


Then came the cry of victory; “Ahhhhh!   I got it! I got it!” Music to our ears.

June and I shot to the bottom of the stairs. Randy swung the furnace room door open. There stood the young Officer, a little untidy, cage in one hand, squirrel dangling from his lasso pole thing in the other, and one giant ear to ear smile on that Officers face.

“You did it! You did it!” I cried out with glee. We were all jumping for joy and hooting and commending the cop on his bravery and capture.

The squirrel, on the other hand, hung there by its neck, swinging punches in the air, and hissing and squealing out idle threats at us. That vile creature. Likely rabid. Filthy rodent. Destructive vermin.

The Officer stood there, soaking up his proud moment of achievement, with his hands full.  Invader3

“I…I……..I need help getting him into the cage?” Randy was quick to offer up assistance. Finally, that nasty little home invader was behind bars.

Ah, all is well now. We made our way back upstairs and took a few moments to praise the young Officer further. My hero. I wanted to shower him with sweets, and wild game to bring home to express my gratitude, but of course, that would not be appropriate. Instead, he simply took the squirrel.

I hope they threw the book at that damn creature.

Needless to say, I have been cleaning and sanitizing and throwing things for days, room by room.   Well to look at the bright side of it all, I guess that’s one way to get my spring cleaning done.


Thank you for reading my post. Was it inspiring? Scary? Funny? Unbelievable? I’d love to hear your thoughts! All comments are greatly appreciated. Life is an adventure—and it begins today! Why wait for an invitation to live an amazing life full of great experiences? There are lots of inspirational stories under my blog category, “PRs Amazing Outdoor Adventure Update”. If you like what you see, please let me know by “liking” my website. You can even join my tribe to automatically receive new postings ‘hot off the press’.

If you find yourself spending your time not doing what you love, I invite you to contact me to create your own, amazing adventure. As always, please feel free to share with others who may find meaning and value in exploring limitless possibilities with PR Brady AdVentures. Thanks again!


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About PR

I’m an “Oily Yogi” ready to inspire you to reach for limitless possibilities.

With a lifetime of experience in the outdoors, one of my biggest joys is to share my passion for adventure with others. After spending decades in suits and buildings, I found a way to combine the office and the outdoors in a way that optimizes positive results. There is a clearly defined correlation between nature, sensory contact, and high impact performance.

I am recognized as a change agent, who inspires people to allow their dreams to become reality through group and individual experiential settings. But perhaps the best gift I can bring to the table is my passion for your wellbeing. I enjoy coaching and training others to achieve their personal and professional goals, focusing on health, wellness wholeness, and limitless possibilities. Everything starts with the self; and is unique to each person. Simply tuning into the breath, mindfulness, and gentle movement for starters. Whenever I can, we take the work outside.

Life is an adventure! Whether it’s a business or personal situation, career path or life path, As Chief Experience Officer of PR Brady AdVentures, my passion is Inspiring Limitless Possibilities, Bringing Our Best Selves to Life.
So, shall we begin?
Contact me for more information on ways we can work together on your possibilities. Namaste!


  1. Oh my! I’m so sorry for your mess and hope you can look back and laugh at this one day. It had me giggling at the thought of it all but I know I wouldn’t have been had I been there.

  2. P.J. Benshoff says

    Great story! You should write a book. Also, I think more people would visit your website and have the opportunity to learn more if you emailed a portion of the newsletter with a link to click that would take you to the rest of the newsletter at your website.

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