The Termite Man Cometh

Today I witnessed a re-enactment of the Ghostbusters film. Three men clutching metal canisters of poison arrived at my home and proceeded to pump their lethal gift into every nook and cranny,

I’ve been waiting for this for months, if not years. The first evidence of termite activity was a couple of years ago, with just a few traces in the bathroom. My landlord reckoned that a can of insecticide was the solution. They subsequently spread to the kitchen, bar area and my bedroom. About a month ago they launched a major assault on the bathroom ceiling, driving countless channels through it.

I’d got to a point where I was nervous about opening any cupboard, knowing there was a good chance that I’d be showered in termite sh*t. (They chew wood, then use the faeces to make tunnels through which they can travel without being exposed to light. These tunnels are often along the edges of doors.)

Eventually, about three months ago, my landlord agreed to get a professional exterminator to address the problem. However, nothing happened. It seems that the change of landlord has, at last, prompted action.

The exterminators started outside the house, drilling holes through the concrete border which surrounds the house and injecting poison. (Termites typically have large colonies underground, in sandy soil, and only invade houses during the rainy season – at least, that’s the theory.) More holes were made in pillars which support the house.

Then they came inside, spraying in cupboards, along skirting boards and into cracks in the parquet flooring. They drilled holes in the bathroom ceiling to inject more poison. Areas of the house I’d thought termite-free were revealed to have healthy infestations. The ghostbusters were, undoubtedly, very thorough.

They left after two and a half hours. I’m left with a house reeking of insecticide, with debris lining many of the cupboards, and the sound of agitated termites resounding from various colonies.

Still, it takes my mind of my other concerns.

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