I have to move.
There’s no other way to look at it. I must leave this house. In the last two days I’ve found THINGS. Things that give me the heebie-jeebies. And I don’t like it one bit.
Yesterday I found a dead roach in the room where I work out. He was upside-down, legs pointed at the ceiling, dead to the world. He just wasn’t dead enough for me. I don’t have my Bug Killer anymore so I have to take care of these issues myself. So I smashed him with my sneaker…a couple of times…just to make sure. I don’t do bugs. No, not at all. And after wiping him up with a paper towel and tucking it into a Ziplock bag, I hit it again for good measure.
When I lived in the South, my best friend was the exterminator. He even had the key to my front door and the security code for the alarm system. I loved him. I actually bought him a Valentine’s Day card one year. He said he loved me too. He loved everyone from the North. We were not “roach people” so we Northerners kept him busy. We didn’t grow up smacking roaches with our bare hands. We grew up loathing them, spraying them with whole cans of RAID, and doing our best to remove them from the face of the earth.
My Southern friends do not share my dread of all things “insect”. I think they purposely shout out “BUG” and then laugh at me when I scale the nearest piece of furniture.
I once stared at a big, hairy spider in the corner, hoping to kill him telepathically. I ended up spraying him with Final Net and essentially glued him into place on the wall.
Today was worse. Today I found a snake.
“Snakes. Why does it have to be snakes.” ~ Indiana Jones
Even the manliest of men has an ewww button. I’m in good company. I wish I could pull off the fedora.
First off, I’m not sure if it was one snake I saw twice or two snakes I saw once. I’m hoping like crazy it was one very mobile and very sociable snake.
The weather is beautiful this weekend. Low 70’s, low humidity, nice breeze out of the northwest. I took it upon myself to weed the flower beds. Not all of them, (that’s just crazy talk) but the ones by the front door. There’s some weird-looking clover/sorrel type weed that is taking over my irises so I went in with guns blazing and started tearing out anything that didn’t look like I wanted it. I think that’s where he was hanging out. As I was unwrapping the hose to clean off the patio furniture, I saw him slithering through the grass…all 2 feet of him. Armed with nothing more than a garden hose, I retreated and watched him as he headed off to a flower bed halfway between the house and the vegetable garden.
Ok, I’m not really surprised to find a garter snake. Voles and mice are no strangers to my yard. My place backs up to 26 acres of greenway so I’m kind of country. Deer, fox, possum, woodchucks, skunks, and raccoons are the bigger visitors. The smaller are mice, gophers, moles, hawks, squirrels, and chipmunks. It’s like Wild Kingdom around here. I know garter snakes are good and will eat my collection of snails, slugs, worms, and mice.
But in the 11 years of owning this house, this is the first time I’ve spotted a snake.
And then I saw him again. Or his twin brother.
I was filling my watering can at the spigot next to the house when he slid past my location. He was hugging the area where the house’s exterior wall meets the dirt.
This time I was ready.
Armed with the lawn edger, I tracked him through the daylilies, past the daliahs, over the wilting daffodils and into the mound of violets. I’m not sure if I got him, but my goal was to chop him in half with the lawn edger.
It’s not that I don’t like snakes. There’s a photo of 13-year old me with a boa constrictor draped across my shoulders from a biology field trip. I just don’t like snakes sneaking up on me. I don’t like them hanging out where I am putting my hands in vegetation.
After finding the roach and the snake I’ve made the decision— I have to move. I wonder if there are any openings on the International Space Station.