Harbinger of Winter

waterbugWaterbugs or cockroaches, call them what you will but to us they are a sign that winter is fast approaching without so much of an inkling of fall. Despite the popular belief that these suckers only enter the filthiest of homes I can most adamantly tell you that this is not true. I keep our house vacuumed, Lysoled and the like and with the exception of the constantly shedding dog hair we are a clean house but you wouldn’t know it if you saw one of these suckers running around!

We live in the central unit in a townhouse complex, boarded on both sides by a townhouse our home backs in to the woods and herein lies the problem. As soon as the temperature drops to winter worthy degrees in come these disgusting and unwelcome visitors. Were these harbingers of winter small we could set down traps to lure them in and leave them dead but they are not, they are nothing that even remotely resembles small. Our “waterbugs” are usually about 2 1/2″ long and 1″ wide and certainly big enough to send me running on sight. I daren’t throw shoes at them (although Buzz will and we have two broken wooden blinds as a result), I dare not crush them with shoes because I just can’t stand that crunch and the oozing bug bits that follows and so we have taken to sucking them up with the vacuum which only leads to another problem – I refuse to empty the vacuum canister for fear that an army of dusty “waterbugs” will come after me. A couple of years ago Queen Bee gifted Buzz with a rubber band gun which, although possibly inhumane, serves well to shoot the nasty crawlers off the ceiling.

The reason for all of these creepy crawlers getting in to the house? Well besides backing on to the woods and the cold weather the house we live in isn’t kept up very well by our landlord. The back door in particular has at least a half inch gap underneath and despite our best amateur efforts to seal it our unwelcomed visitors still squeeze in and our heat always manages to squeeze out. Another result of said gap is that I migrate during the winter, as soon as the weather drops to “chilly” I move my “office” upstairs and work on the bed from 6pm onwards. The upstairs of the house is significantly warmer due – I assume – to better insulation, but this is only the second reason as to why I can’t wait to move in to our new place when grad school comes calling.

So, I hear you ask, what are the other reasons? Well besides the bugs and the huge gaps that allow the warmth to seep out, we were blessed with two plumbing incidents which left the downstairs bathroom without a floor and despite this happening almost two years ago it has still not been replaced and our downstairs bathroom has a cold concrete floor with a rag rug as a makeshift carpet. The second plumbing incident left us with a makeshift skylight in the living room. A washer leak caused the dry wall on the ceiling to collapse and it was torn out. Four or five months after tearing it out it was replaced and spackled but never sanded down or painted leaving a pair of “we just had the house built” spots on the ceiling. Don’t get me wrong, I am appreciative of a roof over my head especially in an economic climate such as this and these are simply problems that arise when you rent from friends or family but I certainly can’t wait until we move, even were we to move from a two bedroom, two level townhouse in to a one bed, one bath apartment it’d be a darn sight warmer!

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3 Responses to “Harbinger of Winter”

  1. 1
    DG says:

    oh yea! if you live in a complex community you can try the best you can to keep the bugs out but they find a way in. so sorry! at least you vacuum to keep the visitors low 🙂

  2. 2
    Queen Bee says:

    I can’t vacuum them up for the same reason — they will crawl out later to come back and get me!!!! What a funny, irrational fear. Too bad we can’t get over that.
    .-= Queen Bee´s last blog ..Threadless Tshirt Giveaway at jaypeeonline.net =-.

  3. 3
    yefi says:

    no fear is irrational! i would be grossed out if i was in your place and very frustrated. we get ants in the summer even though we clean constantly ::shudder::

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