Friday, January 18, 2008

Ants in My Pants
Being in the house all day long over Christmas break, I had to face what I feared most. The ants don't only come out on the weekends, and in fact, spend all day every day trekking through my house in search of a moth carcass or a lost crumb. It was when they started coming in through the BEDROOM window, going down the wall, under the bed, and out into the hallway that I really lost my shizz.

Let me point out that I KNOW ants, okay? It's not like Iowa or Michigan or Indiana or Tennessee were somehow ant-free zones, and this is a totally new experience for me. (Not like when I moved to Michigan and faced cockroaches for the first time in my life... I mean, eww!) I realize that ants are everywhere, but it is the sheer number of ants that we have here that is absolutely mind-boggling. It's not even one KIND of ant... I can at any given moment stand outside and point out at least four different varieties traipsing around.

(I was trying to find a link for you to show all the different kinds, but it was giving me the heebie-jeebies. Google it for yourself.)

What was worse was that people trying to console me were just feeding me lies.

LIE #1 - They're harmless.

If the only reason I notice that there are ants on the floor in the living room is because I'm sitting on the couch and have just got bitten in the sensitive area between my toes, then I'm sorry, but they're NOT harmless.

LIE #2 - At least they're not dirty.
What? Seriously? They're bugs. I don't care if they just took a bath. If they are carving their way through MY FOOD, they are DIRTY.

LIE #3 - This is Queensland. There's not much you can do about ants.
Wrong-o. That's why they invented exterminators.

So after some tears and wailing that I could never open my home to another guest ever, we made a booking with Elders. (Super easy to do, book right online.)

The guy came on Tuesday, and I am feeling much better about life.

The Spider That Nearly Ate Me
Interestingly, the same morning that the pest-control guy came was the same morning that I saw my first huntsman inside the house in ages. I couldn't have just spotted it from afar. No, this one was hiding in the little jar of kitchen utensils I have on my kitchen counter. So when I picked up the tongs to get my chicken out of the oven, it came RUNNING UP MY ARM before I shook it off in mild convulsions. It ran under the dishwasher and was later found gasping for breath after the Elders guy sprayed under there. Sorry, buddy. MY house. Don't forget it.

And More on the Ants
So Wednesday we were walking home from the train, eagerly looking forward to spending some time in the ant-free zone. We were walking through a semi-wooded area, when I felt the bite of a meat ant through my stocking. We made the mistake of stopping to try and remove it, not realizing a nest nearby must have been recently disrupted. Soon there were twenty or more on me and twice as many on Hans -- all madly trying to gnaw through the leather of our shoes or the flesh on our bodies. It was absolutely disgusting, and once we had kicked them all off, it took all my strength to make it the rest of the way home without vomiting. A mistake that will not be made again soon, to be sure.

Linky Links
♥ My household found this very funny: The Downfall of HD-DVD (via The Copydesk).

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an 18 2008, 10:51 pm
eeek! I feel for you! I was shivering while reading your post. Maybe you should move back here.

10:34 PM  

Jan 19 2008, 09:49 am
i feel all itchy now. :)
i would be in utter HELL right now if i were you...i won't try to console you...that SUCKS hard.
i would pass out from sheer fright if i saw one of those spiders!! eeeeew!!!!
*scratch scratch*

10:34 PM  

Jan 24 2008, 06:46 pm
Forget the kangaroos, wombats and wallabies. It's all about ants, spiders and cockroaches! A few weeks ago, everytime the thermometer exceeded 35C, we would come home from work to find a swarm of ants on the walls and baseboards of our lounge. We'd vacuum them up (highly effective way to de-antify a house), and then it would happen again. We also get those big red flying roaches when it gets real hot...they mostly hang out in the bathroom. Haven't had a huntsman or redback encounter yet, but since I am terrified of spiders, I'm sure the first sighting will be the end of me. And this is why we will not stay in Australia beyond a few years.

10:36 PM  

Jan 24 2008, 08:50 pm
I've only seen maybe two roaches that were alive, but after the pest-control guy came, I found more than I care to mention dead under the house.

I use the vacuum method too. I also read somewhere that using a cleaner with eucalyptus helps to get rid of their chemical trail so more don't return the same way. (Though it may be a lie made by the eucalyptus association.) Ugh. Bugs!

10:36 PM  

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