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The Persistence of Rodents
It's been really hot today. Our apartment has these huge south-facing windows, so when it's even somewhat warm outside it's sweltering upstairs. The computers are upstairs. The rats are upstairs. We are all very, very hot.

The rats mostly deal with this by lying down very flat on top of whatever's handy. It's like a Dali painting in there.

It's too hot to run.

It's too hot to move.

And here is a bonus photo of Calliope enthusiastically slurping up the dregs of my chocolate soy beverage the other day. (When Echo tried it, she knocked the glass over.)

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Dude! She melted right into the glass. Really does look like Dali.

Wow. You were right about them not being babies much longer.

Oh, and, I have no idea if this is appealing or not given that I'm going to be working today and thus not the greatest of company, but it's supposed to be worse today than yesterday, plus our house doesn't notice heat. You could grab the rats and yourself and spend the day hanging out in my place, which has wireless and in the A/C and a whole house fan to keep things cool. I have cats, but we could keep them in a separate room.

I have a bunch of stuff I need to get done on the computer, and I have yet to beat my husband's old laptop into something I actually find usable, so I am a bit chained to the desk here. But thank you for the offer!

I was tempted to suggest getting one of the ice-in-a-blue-plastic-container things for putting in coolers to keep them cold, and putting it in the rat cage to give them something cool to sit on. But then I realized that it would probably get chewed through in short order, and I think the stuff in those things is not exactly something rats ought be drinking.

I gave them a dish of ice cubes and frozen peas and blueberries this morning. Echo and Clio were all over the peas; Calliope ferried all the ice cubes down to the bottom of the cage. She is completely fascinated by them. I put some water in containers in the fridge to make big ice blocks that she can't haul around so much. I don't know if anyone will want to sit on an ice block. Maybe if I wrap it in a towel?

Poor Niobe was looking particularly miserable, so I took her downstairs while I had lunch, and she perked up significantly. Now they're all down there in the small auxiliary cage. If they're just going to lie around they don't need a whole lot of space, and it's much less miserable downstairs.

The set of photos got a good giggle out of me. Reminds me of a set of sketches my sister did at a zoo while she was staying in Florida. The temperature was somewhere past 100, and it's not particularly obvious in her animal drawings at first. The birds? Fine. Turtles? Fine. Then once it hits the page of monkey sketches it suddenly is VERY obvious how hot it was. All of the monkeys are draped over the branches limply and laid sprawled out on the ground. It's hilarious, and looks much like the ratties.


I have personally observed squirrels in the wild (well, at least in San Marcos) flattening themselves out like that. They looked like little bearskin rugs. Only with fluffy tails.

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