Dad’s shouting woke me. Rolling over in bed, I rubbed my face and tried to understand through the fog of sleep what was going on. I heard footsteps along the hallway then the stairs. Mum’s voice in the kitchen and dad replying.
I got up, climbed down the bunk bed’s ladder and went, yawing and groggily, to investigate.
‘Look in the sink!’ mum cried as I entered the kitchen.
Confused, I did so and what I saw shocked me fully awake.
A fluffy, brown, fat hamster was trying to climb up the back of the sink but he kept sliding down because he couldn’t get a grip on the smooth surface.
‘Houdini!’ I yelled and grabbed the wiggling hamster, ‘I thought you were lost forever.’
‘So it’s him, then?’ dad asked.
‘Houdini has been missing a whole year,’ mum pointed out, ‘are you sure?’
Peering into my cupped hands at the ball of fluff and I nodded.
‘Where has he been?’ mum wondered.
(Inspired by; https://rochellewisoff.com/2020/07/08/10-july-2020/ with thanks.)
This is a true event from my childhood. Houdini was so named because he would escape and we’d never find out how he did it. He would be missing for awhile but this time it really was a whole year that he was gone for.
A few years after Houdini passed away, we got a new washing machine and a hamster nest was discovered in the vent. We believed it to have been Houdini’s nest and he had lived in the kitchen were there was always access to food and water.