Sunday, July 18, 2010

How soon we forget

How did I manage to forget about houseflies, mosquitoes and earwigs?

Probably the same way I "forgot" about the bliss of childbirth: willful oblivion.

Colorado, being more or less a desert, had very few bugs. Except, of course, the really vicious kind, like black widow spiders, brown recluse spiders or scorpions. We did, in fact, find some black widow spiders in our garage, once, in Colorado, and subsequently employed Terminix on a regular basis. So, for five years, we lived in ignorant bliss.

But here in Ottawa, annoying, little pests abound, and it's ghastly!

First, I was treated to the incessant pinging of a brain-deficient housefly ramming its head continually into our window. Bzzzt-bang! Bzzzt-bang! Bzzzt-bang! Walk-walk-walk. Bzzzt-bang! Bzzzt-bang! Bzzzt-bang!

I fetched the long-unused flyswatter from under the kitchen sink. (Why we found this piece of ephemera before we found our bath towels is a packing mystery.) I swatted said fly and nabbed it on my second try. It plummeted to the floor, and I gloated. Only to be outdone a few seconds later when it recovered from its concussion and crawled behind a box, beyond my reach. Moral: don't stop swatting until the fly is two-dimensional.

Then later, as I lay sweltering in our bedroom, (the hottest room in the house, for some inexplicable reason) sweat beading on my lip and brow, cursing the humidity, the bed linens, the children, my husband and God, I heard that unmistakeable whine of a mosquito as it scouted for fresh blood. The hair on my neck stood on end, I felt an immediate adrenaline rush. Within seconds, I'd pulled the sheets over my superheated body.

That lasted for about two minutes. Whereupon, I flung back the sheet and made a dash for the hallway.

About to descend the stairs to the cooler area of the house (the sunroom, believe it or not, is the coolest room in the house), I spied a black blot on the baseboard. I had not thought to put on my glasses in my haste to escape the vampire (a.k.a. mosquito), so I could only surmise that this black blot was a pest. I bent. I squinted. Yup.

An earwig.

Anyone who has seen the Star Trek episode with the ear-invading parasites, or who has seen a scorpion, has to quiver at the sight of an earwig. They are hideous. My toes curled. I cringed. Then I ran to the bathroom, grabbed a hank of toilet paper, smushed that earwig to oblivion and flushed it down the toilet. (I don't care how many gallons of water it wasted; I didn't want its eggs hatching post mortem.)

So far, I've seen no bugs today. But every little tickle I feel, every little black blot I see out of the corner of my eye has me on edge. No wonder sci-fi movies specialize in giant insects!

1 comment:

  1. Don't worry, you'll get re-acclimated, and soon you'll just take it all in stride!


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