Fire ants in the driver’s seat

I would have preferred a “Wash me” written in the dust of my rear window to the trail of ants crawling through my car picking up the detritus of weeks of my eating and drinking while driving. The window, however, had been cleaned when I filled up at gas station. It was the bits of food on the carpet and seats which attracted the fire ants to my vehicle last week.

Maybe it was my parking spot. Maybe the construction in the area disturbed their nest and usual sources of food. Whatever the reason for the phenomenon, a few hundred ants thronged under, over and in front of the driver’s seat. I had gone to the car to warm up from the chill of the refrigerated office – not to watch fire ants slavishly hauling out my leftover popcorn.

I went back into the office and visited the different departments in search of bug spray. I wanted the strong stuff, the anti-environment stuff, the quick killing stuff advertised on TV, the stuff that makes bugs cringe in fear at the very sight of it.
No one had anything remotely like what I wanted.

I called home to ask my husband to bring some when he came into town.

He had already left.

I went back and studied the ants cleaning out the tiniest crumbs of food. I tried to kill a few under foot, but winced at the thought of getting close enough to reap the red welts they dispense before they yield to our superior size and die.

I escaped inside the office to consider my options. I did not have many. I sat down and worked until time to meet my friend for lunch.
Before I meant her, I needed to get something from the car, even if it meant confronting the ants warding me off at the door.

Breathing slowly to calm my nerves and to not disturb the critters, I reached in and retrieved the item. The ants ignored me in their quest to stock up their larder for the winter.

As I watched them, I wondered if moving the car would confuse the ants and cause them to leave. Taking a book from the back, I brushed them aside, perched on the seat, started the car and drove to the end of the parking lot.

No bites.
I only had a little ways to go to meet my friend. I could have walked, I preferred to really confuse those little buggers. Before I got their the monsters chomped into my elbow and thumb.

At the eatery, I asked if anyone had bug spray. A can appeared. I liberally sprayed my revenge up, down, left and right at the fire ants, slammed the door, went to lunch and rubbed ice over the ant bites.

My dinner date asked if I needed to get my car detailed. No, but it did need to be rid of the dead carcasses on the seats and floor.
I left my car at the shop across the street from the office. They de-bugged and cleaned it inside and out.

Try and find a meal in there now, you little creeps. Joan is back in the driver’s seat.

About jottingjoan

retired former newspaper writer. Many children and grandchildren. One husband.
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