Dear ants

Please desist from entering my house without written approval

Dear ants,

THERE was a saying going around once suggesting that your presence on walls and kitchen benches was a sign that a large amount of rain was on its way.

The only real sign I can see you pointing to is that someone is about to get in trouble for spilling apricot jam on the kitchen bench top or dropping cake crumbs down behind the lounge.

It is my personal preference not to have you within the house though.

You can be found weaving through bookcases, baby change tables, utensil drawers and perhaps most frustrating of all, food pantries.

No one likes having to remove you individually from the sugar bowl. People like it even less to find you floating in their cup of tea, a sure sign of a doomed escape mission.

I have no problem with you scurrying about outside. You do good work when you are out there I’ve noticed, be it helping to aerate the soil or assisting with the decomposition of road-kill or prompting the imaginations of children who stare at you.

Keep it outside and we’ll all be happier.

Some of you may have noticed we engaged the services of a pest control professional earlier in the year.

His products have apparently worn off because you have quite happily taken up residence throughout our residence once more.

This is annoying.

You are usually first noticed on the windowsill. Seeing one of your kind will lead my eye to another, and another, before the discovery of a black train line shuffling back and forth along an invisible track carrying messages and biscuit fragments.

It seems odd that we would share the same taste in living arrangements, what with us being two totally different species.

You don’t see me burrowing through the hole in the brickwork to plant myself within your nest and wander about your tunnels looking for something to eat.

My inner sense of manners tells me this isn’t right. It would also be extremely difficult for me to fit into your domain.

Please desist from entering my house without written approval.

As part of a compromised deal, I invite you to explore the wheelie bin.

(PS: I’m sure you’ll find the standard waste bin more appealing than the cardboard and milk bottles offered by the recycling bin.)


Ashley Walmsley

is the editor of Good Fruit and Vegetables.
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