I managed to go a long time this year before I finally caved and turned on the air conditioning. All during that time I slept with my three bedroom windows wide open and during the day I kept my balcony’s sliding glass door open in order to catch the breeze and enjoy the sounds of nature.
Apparently, without my realizing it, I was putting out a welcome mat to various and sundry uninvited guests.
Now, finding insects in your home in the summer is not all that unusual. I’ve always got a friend or two who complain about an infestation of ants in the kitchen or flies buzzing around the house. In that case the solution is simple. You deal with them with insect spray and are done with it.
Unfortunately, MY particular bugs are a lot more devious. They know that if they appeared en masse I’d poison them or call an exterminator. But these guys are not that obvious. They’re waging psychological warfare on me. In other words, they’re showing up one by one, in unlikely places most of the time.
It started in the kitchen with a gnat…one measly gnat. He was flying in front of me as I was standing at the sink. Naturally I assumed he was there because I always have a big bowl of fruit on the counter. But, he went nowhere near the fruit. When I’d try to swat him, he’d disappear. If I stood very still by the fruit, he wouldn’t show up. When I’d go back to what I was doing, he’d start flying in front of my face again. Finally I caught him between my fingers and executed him and…no more gnats! Not one replacement or back-up gnat appeared.
A day or so later I was sitting in the living room watching TV when, lo and behold, what did I observe, but a solitary ant walking across the carpet! I looked around to see if he had brought any friends, but no. He was alone. But, what the heck was he doing in the living room? Had he hitched a ride on the morning paper and jumped off as soon as he got into the house? It was strange. Anyway, I don’t like stepping on bugs because it’s hard to get up the squashed mess. So, I’ve taken to picking up all bugs (except spiders) with my fingers. I grabbed this guy and escorted him right out the front door and threw him into the front yard. “Tell your friends they’re not welcome either!” I told him and slammed the door.
“Okay,” I told myself, “Maybe there’s no conspiracy going on here. Maybe there’s no ‘One-Bug-At-A-Time’ strategy. Maybe it’s all just a coincidence. After all, they’re only bugs.”
So the next day I was perched on the throne in my master bathroom on the second floor, gazing into the distance and thinking how wonderful it would be if I won the lottery, when I saw something out of the corner of my eye. I leaned forward and looked closer and could not believe my eyes! There on the floor by the door was a fuzzy caterpillar! What the hell? He was just nonchalantly making his way and I’m sure if I could have heard him, he was singing “Doody-doo, doody-doo. I am here to torture you!” I was so annoyed at the sheer audacity of this guy that I picked him up and gave him a very quick “burial at sea,” if you get my drift. For crying out loud! How did he get into my house? I mean, this guy was obviously too chubby to have slid in through the screen. And, if he came in through the front door, how did he get to the second floor?
Do these insects have a secret entrance into my home? Is there a little calendar in their headquarters that lists what day each of them gets a chance at me? “Okay Beetle, you’re up!” Because if they think this is a big joke, I don’t think it’s very funny.
Now I’ll admit, I haven’t seen any bugs in the house in about three days. But I know it’s not over. Oh no, not by a long shot. These guys aren’t through.
They’re just regrouping…