Today the ants found the pantry. Until now I've been able to keep them to the other side of the kitchen where they regularly march in to see what tiny scraps we have accidentally left on the kitchen surface, or whether, to their great joy, I have left the honey out, again. We have sprayed outside and in, but they are determined little creatures and losing a couple of hundred of their comrades does not deter them. It is said that cockroaches will survive a nuclear bomb, but what about ants? They are pretty much the only thing the pest guys won't guarantee exterminating, and I know they'll be back.
This morning the familiar black line was hurrying up the inside of the cupboard, from shelves one to six. At each shelf, bands of them had split from the crowd to explore potential food sources, with the result that every shelf needed emptying to be sure I found the every last ant. Luckily their tastes are specific and they didn't find as much as I had anticipated, but the concern is that now they know the food source, one of those little creatures will have got back to the nest and spread the word, and they'll be back.
The cereal shelf was relatively unharmed, a few sweets from lolly bags shoved in the cupboard in the hope the kids would forget about them, were taken, and of course, they found the honey. At one point I thought I'd got them all, but then I reached the top shelf where we keep the alcohol that we don't ever drink, but keep in case of emergencies or cooking requirements. I'm not saying we don't drink, we just tend to stick to the red wine and beer options rather than the spirits, but it's always good to have a little supply for those visitors who we haven't entertained in 5 years, or that tiramisu I used to make, when I last entertained, about 5 years ago.
Despite the 5 year drought since these bottles were last opened, the ants were hooked. There must have been enough sticky residue on the outside to lure them in. The only consolation is, they died happy.
So, instead of spending my child free morning working, and taking some time out, I have cleaned the pantry out, and although I have won this battle, I still need a plan of attack for the long term war with the ants.
But let's look on the bright side. Cleaning the pantry would probably never have reached number 1 on the priority list, and I've thrown out all those jars and packets with sell by dates from 2007 and 2008. (We only moved in to the house three years ago, otherwise who knows what else I would have found.)
Now I just have to tackle the car. Oh, didn't I say? We have ants in the car too...