Saturday, May 2, 2009

The Ant Farm

Life Balance: a feat we try to achieve while searching to be the best that we can we, while simultaneously raising our children to do the same. This is the equilibrium in our inner life force whereby our heartbeat matches the divine force that exists all around us. When this life balance peaks, our sense of peace, joy, love and wisdom act as one with our very soul.

Lovely spring time in Buffalo. The birds are chirping, and the brisk morning air envigorates my senses when I open the kitchen window. All seems right in the world, time to clean, time to garden, time to feel joy. Wait, who's that visiting again? Oh, its my friends, the carpenter ants.

Every year, we seem to get a few visiting us, wandering around the kitchen a few at a time. No big deal, and soon enough, they seem to move outside. This year, they came in early April with warmer temps. 6 or so came. We stomped them out. The next morning, maybe a dozen. We shooed them away, killed some with whatever chemical we had nearby. Next week, 2 dozen ants. Hmm, more spray, empty out one cupboard, wash around. Next week, baking cupboard loaded with ants. Open lazy susan cupboar with all oils, vinegars, tea, coffee, loaded. Open cereal cupboard, more ants. Ants everywhere, crawling the walls, in the bathroom, yuck. My beautiful center island gets piled high with all my food. It's 3 feet high with flour, sugar, cereal, pasta, oil and spices. I have emptied the cupboards, vacummed, scrubed. They just keep coming.

Crud, soon I am watching the little fellows march everywhere in neat uniform patterns. I think its a scene for an Alfred Hitchcock movie, where the ants take over my life, slowly eating all means of wood, destroying the infrastructure. I try to ignore them, use ant powder. Nothing. Finally laying on the couch, one crawls over me. That's it. Now I am mad, they are invading my precious nap time. They must go!

"Can I declare carpenter ants as dependents?"--me, 5 Am one morning

I google the carpenter ant. Nice, the worst thing you can do is use pesticides to kill them instantly. The queen just gets mad and makes more babies. Great, I am causing the queen to have to have more sex. Like its a tragedy for her, she's probably grateful for the action. I however, am sick of this. I look up the correct chemicals to use. I need to get ones to make them ingest the poision and take it back to the nest.

It suggests following the ants, to find the nest. 14 years of this, and we have never tracked down the nests, but I am on a mission now. I am possessed. I have a wild look in my eyes. All activity stops in the house, and we must get these damn ants out. I spend the day watching my own personal ant farm. We buy ant traps, and they don't seem to work. DH goes back to store to buys something else. I stand guard over them, following them.

DH comes back with powder. Another $50 bucks spent. We watch them, follow them. Check the garage overhang honey. DH crawls up there with flashlight, nothing. Maybe they are in the sofet by the breezeway. Open that up, nothing. The back patio roof. Nothing. I know, the crawl space. He spends an hour crawling all around and emerges looking like Peanuts character with a cloud of dirt following him around. He even looks like he has hair with the cobwebs and dirt clinging to his scalp. Nothing there.

Watch the little guys some more. I've got it, the stairs, they must be under them. DH knocks a hole in the back of the kitchen closet. Nothing. Well, I always wanted that closet to be bigger, now it is. We are out of ideas now. Spend the day dropping powder on them. Now I have white ants crawling over the kitchen, nice. A blizzard of pets.

The next day they seem to be gone. We wait the week, they haven't come back. Clean up, put everything away. Go outside, get out the chairs, enjoy the hot air. Wait. What's that? The ants are out here now. Get the powder, give me a beer, time to get back to ant work.

Oh the joys of spring. I think I'll say they are crawling in a virgin Mary pattern so at least I can charge admission when everyone comes to pray over them. With enough people, I am sure we can crush them. Not.

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