Storm season started weeks ago – I’ve already told you about how lightning blew up one of our trees back in September – and it feels like summer’s cranking, even though it only just officially started today. We’ve already had a record October with temperatures in the mid 30s. (Celsius.) (ie around 95F.) (In the middle of spring!)
When the mercury climbs in spring we fling back the sliding doors and open the windows and (except for during storms) they stay open day and night until about April. We often get a heads up when big rains are coming; the ants turn up a week or so beforehand, instinctively climbing the poles and into our house as if it’s a tree. They’re like dozens of tiny mothers-in-law, going behind me and pointing out all the messes I haven’t cleaned up yet. There’s one crawling across my iPad screen right now, judging me.
I figure the ants are refugees; they’re just trying to escape the expected flooding, so I don’t Ant Rid them any more; as soon as it rains they’ll leave again, vanishing into the night like tiny crumb-finding vigilantes. (See what I did there?)
I let them wander freely, though I’ve no doubt when human friends visit it’s not the best look… hey, don’t judge! Living in harmony here!
Although I’m happy not to poison them I’m not about to vacuum around them as if they were a cat or one of the children, and they’d better watch out if they get in the honey jar. I call them The Teenagers because they’re always bringing their mates over and raiding the pantry.
They mostly stake out the bin. It’s enormous – 80 litres. I love it, especially after years of using fliptop bins lined with tiny shopping bags and lazy housemates stuffing rubbish in until it’s stacked on top like a Jenga tower. Our bin can take a LOT; losing track of when it was last emptied isn’t such a big deal in winter, but in summer it can be. Especially when the boys never close the bloody flyscreens.
I should have put the bin out when we got home but J & I had been on a very enjoyable date and it was late and I just wanted to go to bed. I washed my face and hydrated, but forgot to put out the rubbish.
And the next morning as I wandered blearily into the kitchen I looked down and wondered why are all those bits of paper on the floor? Or… bits of rice? Huh? What the ohmyGodwhyaretheymovingOHSHIT… maggots! Gross!!
It’s not like you couldn’t put your foot down without stepping on one – they escape the bin in dribs and drabs, so there were only a couple dozen or so. But also probably a couple hundred ants, all tackling the maggots, who were humping it as fast as they could for the corners. It was a stampede.
It was a particularly not good look because our first time babysitter, a friend’s daughter, had stayed over and was greeted by not just a floor crawling with maggots but a floor crawling with ants riding on maggots. Oh CRAP #SOOnotagoodlook and she got up before I could collect them all.
The boys wanted to help; it was like a treasure hunt! A slimy, wriggling, disgusting treasure hunt. We gathered them up in the dustpan and tossed them into the driveway where the magpies ate them. Aaah, that’s better! Back to harmony.
That was so gross and I only had to have that happen once to learn my lesson and never wait too long again.
… except for those other times. But NO MORE from now on, I’m serious.
May you also enjoy the 91 days of summer completely maggot free! Er, and the rest of the year of course.