Sometimes the way a day starts is an indicator of how the rest of the day is going to turn out. This morning, for example, I got up, eager for our Saturday morning breakfast ritual of fried eggs and homemade bread. However, when I wandered into the kitchen, I was faced with an invasion, now to be known as Ant Attack of Bread Mountain. Over the past week, the ant army has apparently discovered the delights of our kitchen. I’m the first to admit that the husband and I are not the tidiest of cohabitants. When cooking, I generally feel more successful if the kitchen becomes clad in a combination of ingredients from the chosen recipe. I like to stand among the crumbs of my labour. And knowing that there is someone to clean up after me has made me less careful with my chopping and stirring, awful as it is to admit.
However, I must stress that it was not our lack of cleanliness that brought in the army. Last week, I arrived home to find the ants in the midst of an exploratory mission within our cupboards. Yes, they had found the honey; and they had also found the packet of egg and soba noodles I had sealed together in a Ziploc bag (note, Ziploc bag is not so useful if it in fact has an entry hole in it). On discovering this invasion, being the domestic damsel I am, I immediately texted the husband and demanded he come home from work to deal with the situation. What followed, was an hour or so of misting the kitchen with poison, disposing of the dead and spraying down every surface with disinfectant.
Apart from a couple of scouts now and then, we had thought we were pretty much safe. Until the Bread Mountain incident that is. It’s become a habit now, every Friday night I come home and set the breadmaker to mix us up a loaf of white bread for the weekend. There is not a good availability of fresh loaves of bread on the island. If one goes into town, one may pick up a nice French baguette or some long rolls, but frankly the husband and I don’t venture into town regularly enough to survive on these alone. Otherwise the bread option is some shitty loaf from the Minimart which for some reason tastes sweet and is apparently made from substances which give the bread a shelf life of more than 6 months. Even if you leave it sitting on the counter. Questionable, perhaps?
Anyhoo, as usual, Friday night after work I put the bread on to do its thing, and when it beeped, we removed it from the bread maker and sat it on a wire rack to cool, covered in a tea towel. And as we went to bed, an ant invasion didn’t even enter my wine-affected brain.
This morning, the invasion was in full swing. The army was marching down our cupboards – not even bothering to peek inside – they had set their sights on a larger prize. Our fresh loaf of bread. And those bastards had conquered it. Little anty workers were marching off carrying crumbs of bread twice their own size. And not only were they marching across the mountain – they had actually infiltrated it too. They were inside.
Devastation! I hate ants, they make me itch and they seem to get absolutely everywhere. The only saving point about these ants is that they don’t appear as aggressive as the nasty ones outside that will attack you simply for standing in their way. I should say, ants are not a completely new experience for us – we had the odd invasion back in Oz too as a result of leaving dirty dishes in the sink. Thankfully, there hadn’t been too many instances of them stealing our food source however.
So, it was a case of Happy Start of the Weekend to us! Enjoy inhaling poison while you eat your eggs on shitty store-bought preservative-laden sugar bread, among the dead ant bodies. The homemade loaf of course was tossed in the trash, and we resigned ourselves to a homemade bread-free weekend.
You would think that this start to the weekend was in fact an indicator of things to come, and I might as well have thrown myself back into bed, stuck my head under the pillow and decided to sleep through Saturday altogether. But, weekends are precious, and so I didn’t. We ate our eggs on toast, drank our tea, then skyped my Mum back in Oz to help her set up her new phone. It was nice to hear how much she and my stepdad are enjoying their change of lifestyle in far north Queensland. One day I hope to explore the areas of Oz that they are having the opportunity to explore also.
Then, while the husband set off to work to graft away for a few hours, I spoke with my best buddy who is currently suffering through another searing heatwave in rural Oz. I love that she can still talk to me honestly and tell me exactly how she’s feeling despite the fact that we’ve been apart for over three years. When you live in a fishbowl, and part of your time is necessarily spent maintaining civilities with the people you work, live and share air with, it’s good to have something real.
It was a lovely way to spend my Saturday morning, notwithstanding the attack on our Bread!
Living on this island can be isolating at times (in spite of the ant army). And when people you care about take the time to share their day with you, it lifts your spirits undeniably.
So with a positive outlook, it’s now time to tackle the kitchen once again. Cross my fingers the ant scouts have decided to have a rest day too.