Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Oh, What a Creepy Crawly Night

I spoke too soon about my Monday evening. That’s what I get for blogging before the evening was over.

On the last episode of “Captain Monkeypants Babbles…A Lot”, I was talking about how I appreciated “24” because Jack Bauer had really bad days and he put my bad days in perspective.

However, last night, I had to deal with something that Jack Bauer NEVER had to deal with and, I tell you, I think I might prefer lopping off someone’s head with a hacksaw.

I’m just kidding about that. Decapitation is not funny. Especially with a hacksaw because that would take not only a lot of upper arm strength but would also be messy.

Anyway, you might wonder what horrible thing might make manual decapitation seem slightly preferable. Well, let me tell you.


Yes. I have termites in my living room.

And yes, thank you, I am disgusted, horrified and plain unhappy about my termite situation.

The ironic thing is that I have these little bait thingies all around my home because the lady from whom I bought my house was very worried about termites. She had an agreement with Terminix and they sprayed/checked yearly.

I didn’t renew her termite agreement with Terminix because, well, at the time, I was working in my old job and didn’t have the income to pay for such luxuries as termite control. Also, I thought the spray/treatment was likely to last a few years because that’s what I read on the internet. Also, I bought my own termite spray to put in the bait thingies last year.

So, you can see why I was a little taken aback to find termites anyway even if I didn’t have a Terminix agreement anymore.

The way I discovered them was quite innocent. I have a large windowseat type of space all the way across my living room window. I don’t really sit there as much as I use it for storage of magazines and my mail. Also, it makes an excellent surface for junk. I usually clean it off weekly.

Last night, I was working on my lap top because even after I got home from work late, I still had work to do. When I was finally done sending resumes and emailing my boss, I left the laptop on but put it on the windowseat so I could make dinner.

Then, after dinner, I went to pick up my laptop to do some surfing. Then I noticed this little row of holes in my windowseat. I’d never noticed them before. At first, I thought it was just the paint cracking. My windowseat was part of the great Cranberry and Sage Painting Fiasco of 2009 and it was before I learned that it’s better not to pile on the paint but, rather, see if I need to touch it up instead. Thus, cracking paint would not have surprised me.

However, upon my closer peering, I noticed that the trim on the windowseat had a hole in it and there were little teeny shavings of wood all around it. I peered even closer.

Then I promptly squealed like a girl and jumped back because there were things moving in the hole.

I’m no stranger to termites. In college, my roommate and I had The Worst Landlord Ever and we had termites. It was vile. They were in our bathroom. We moved out quite soon after that.

This time around, I was still disgusted. The pups were looking at me like I was nuts because of my sudden squeal. I began to tentatively move all of the papers and junk from the area where I found the holes. There were more holes underneath.

I’m a grown woman. I own my own house. I am responsible for two dogs. I have a steady job. Thus, I am an adult.

This still did not stop me from immediately dialing my mother’s cell phone and saying, “mummy! I’ve got termites! What do I do?”

The things is, I really did know what to do. I even had spray in the garage. Yet it’s at times of panic and bugs that I find it somewhat calming to talk to my mummy and daddy. My mother was very calming. My dad was, as I knew he would be, quite instructive. He told me to spray the termites and then call Terminix.

I knew this is what I should do already but it’s somehow nicer when it comes from an authority figure like my dad. After a few sympathetic closing sympathetic words from my mother, I had to go deal with the situation.

I sprayed the termites as carefully as possible while simultaneously making sure that the dogs wouldn’t get near the spray. I also went outside in the pouring rain and tried to spray into the bait thingies that were closest to the windowseat.

Then when I was content that I’d killed all of the nasty, disgusting things that were moving in the holes, I went online and looked up Terminix.

The quickest they can come is Thursday. Eek.

I’m trying to be ok with the termites. It’s hard. After my initial spray last night, some tried to get out of the holes to escape the poison. This determined that they were, in fact, termites and not flying ants. I know this because I looked them up online and the nasty winged creature that was dying on my windowseat looked much more like a termite than an ant.

I haven’t seen anything move in there since last night. I went home at lunch today and didn’t find any new holes nor any new termites. It is not stopping me from being paranoid.

Also not stopping me from being paranoid was the fact that when I went to bed last night, I slept horribly and kept thinking that I was hearing the termites chewing through my house. Since I’d done a thorough inspection before I’d gone to bed to make sure there weren’t any more visible holes/termites, I rationally knew my imagination was playing tricks on me.

In addition, I’m certain that you can’t actually hear termites chewing. Nevertheless, at 2 a.m. when it’s dark, bucketing down with rain and every tiny itch on my body makes me wonder if there’s a termite on me…I feel like I can hear the termites.

It also didn’t help that when I did sleep, I had a very vivid dream in which termites began falling out of the ceiling onto my bed in large, plopping clusters . To make it even worse, in my dream, I knew I was sleeping and I even checked to see if they were real and they were. It was an Inception type situation where it was a dream within a dream.

It is unpleasant to know you’re asleep but still feel like there are large, nasty hives of termites falling on you. Even when you have two pups spooned against you, teddy bear style, for comfort, it’s still unnerving.

When I did wake up, it was still raining. I know the rain is partially responsible for the termites. They came indoors to escape the rain and they found my windowseat. I like the rain a lot…normally. However, when each drip drip drip of the rain splashing from the gutter sounds like “crunchymunchycrunch” of the wood of my house being eaten away by nasty little winged creatures,” it’s hard to like the rain.

Still, as I said, since last night, I haven’t seen a termite in the house. There are no new holes. There are only old ones that are still shiny from the spray that I enthusiastically used to destroy the little…buggers. I’m hoping that I’ve provided a stopgap until Terminix can come and tell me that my house is not falling down or being eaten from the inside out or that I need to spend thousands of dollars so that my house is not going to fall down.

Either way, I’d be much happier without the termites. Also, if I’d seen Jack Bauer face such a formidable enemy, I’d feel better. He’d probably reach in those holes, individual pull out each termite by the wing, rip it off, stomp on them and then set fire to them.

Then again, perhaps calling Terminix is a little destructive.

Now all I have to do is wait.

Happy Wednesday!

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