It all started the day before when I was bitten by a red ant (also called “yam ant” or “fire ant“) as I was hanging laundry. The red ants bite hard and leave an itching swelling that later turns into a small, painful blister that stays with you for days. Anyways, so this red ant bites me twice on the toe next to the big toe and it hurts like a bee sting. I immediately decide on revenge.
So after taking the clothes down (mind you in wellington boots), I look for the ant colony and BINGO – I see some sandy mounds in the lawn with holes where red ants run in and out.
I take a hoe and proceed to work.
As I dig thousands of ants well out, some start climbing the hoe, others my boots. I have anticipated this and shake them off. I continue to dig and do not stop when I start to find white eggs and winged queens.
I dig and I dig and when I feel like I have come to the bottom of their colony, I spread out the soil/ant chaos thinly and go for the water hose.
Many thoughts cross my mind. I think of the ants unfortunate choice of settlement. I think of how I never want to be bitten again. I look for eggs and queens and step on them. Hard. I feel like a mean King Kong. I am impressed with the ants who tirelessly try to organize themselves throughout what must be one of the worst mornings in their life. Noone stops in panic or gives up! I spray water with force onto the fleeing ants. I think of more effective ways of killing them. Salt? Poison? Neem tree? I remember to stomp my feet. I hear by heart beating fast and feel weirdly upbeat about my killing rampage.
When I have filled the hole of what was once a proud red ant colony with water, sprayed as many ants as possible into the muddy waters and stepped on everything with wings, I withdraw.
I am now, with anticipation, awaiting their next move.
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