Monday, April 26, 2010


Yes, there are more important things I could be doing but little black creeping insects on my counters instil a strange sort of need in me to declare war.  They are trying to take over my house.  I need to fight back.   I am not generally an ant hater but I think that might be down to the fact I had never seen a trail of ants in a house until we moved here last year.  That infestation was relatively quick but body shudderingly yucky all the same.  I don't like uninvited guests of any kind.  (Last year, my kids made friends with other kids because the number one game to play was Die, Ants, Die.  They didn't die.)

Over the weekend, my laptop was pretty much destroyed by an unnamed toddler.  Unnamed because nobody is naming names or pointing fingers.  Give them a few years and they'll be selling each other out - I hope.  I can't use it right now and had things to do so got up early and went downstairs to steal borrow my partner's laptop instead.  Technology is not a friend of mine, getting a lend of anything that requires a battery or a hard drive is a near impossible task.  Anything remotely electrical chooses not to work when I am around.  It's a very special gift I have.

Anyway, I went downstairs in the dark and of course mooched into the kitchen first.  I need snackage before I can work.  Turning on the light and carrying the kettle to the sink I drew back in horror as an army of ants threatened to descend upon me.  Okay, they all tried to run away as soon as I got near them but I gave a girlish shriek and frantically sprayed them with the nearest disinfectant type liquid before running for my life.  I'm not actually scared of ants, I just don't like to be surprised by a mass of crawling black things when I least expect it.

I ventured back into the kitchen when my heart resumed beating at a sensible pace and saw that the ants were all gone.  I'm not sure if they evaded the spray, chuckling devishly at my amateurish attempt to murder them or if the surviving but wounded ants bravely carried their fallen comrades away.  I don't really care, the fact that I didn't have to clean up any dead bodies meant score one to me.

I don't enjoy killing insects (although my cat seems to be having fun hunting them) so I've been looking for ways to make my home less appealing.  With small children and pets, there will always be something appetising to eat but it's only April, I can't handle six month infestation.  Google tells me there are a million and one ways to get rid of ants but they might not work, some ants are sturdier than others it seems and some less discerning in taste.  I've adjusted my online shopping list to include things like planted mint and scented baby powder in the hope they will keep away. 

If the many items on the list that might fool you into thinking I'm baking up quite a feast fail, I will be keeping an eye out for maize/cornmeal/whatever it is called over here as a last resort.  It seems kind of cruel to try and kill the whole colony but I'm having a baby this summer, if one ant crawls anywhere near her I will boil them.  And I'll get their Queen too.  Fair warning.  We don't have a garden so I have absolutely no idea where they are nesting but apparently all of the neighbours have them.  Short of opening jars of honey on all of their window ledges, I'm not sure how to distract the ants from my house until they feck off and die by themselves.  It's going to be an ant-obsessed summer - even now there are lines of salt and pools of vinegar decorating my downstairs.  Cleaning up in the mornings is going to be a bitch.

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