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Damn the Millers.  Damn them.  They are back.

If you’ve followed me for any length of time, you may perhaps recall last year, at almost exactly this time, we had a serious moth problem – I discussed it here.  From my many years in Colorado, and the discussions about the moth crisis last year, I thought this to be a cyclical thing, with the cycle being something like every 20 years.  Apparently, I was mistaken.

They are back with an enthusiasm that portends vengeance.  I thought it was just one or two – no big deal – but then realized that’s how it started last year.  And nightly, their numbers increase.  They flirt with self-destruction in the single bedroom light at night.  Their wings beat the walls and ceiling in the darkness.  They hide during the day, in folds of curtains, in underwear drawers (seriously?!), in shoes, like stalking lions, waiting to leap out upon the unsuspecting gazelle.

Kelsea came into my room last night at 1:30, and stood spectrally by my bedside, as she does when she wants to wake me.  It always works, no matter how quiet she is.  “There was an earwig on my pillow and a moth in my room,” she said sleepily.  The dutiful mother, I got up and killed them both and put her back to bed.  But at 2:30, the spectre was back.   “There are more moths in my room.  I can’t handle it.  I’m freaking out.  They’re flying at my face.  They chased me  out of the room.  I can’t stay here.  Can we call someone?  Why aren’t they at Dad’s house?  Can I sleep with you?”

Of course, she can and did sleep with me, and we both slept well, undisturbed and mothless.  I know they’ll be back today though, and tonight.  It IS creepy.  I don’t know how they get in the house, and I don’t want to entertain the thought that they’re hatching in here somewhere, but it has crossed my mind.  While the weather a few weeks ago was coolish and dampish, it has been hot since then, so I wouldn’t have thought that the breeding/migrating/whatever pattern from last year was being replicated.  I just don’t understand it.

What I do understand is that Kelsea (moreso than I, but I too, to a certain extent) has developed a veritable phobia about these buggers.  I truly thought last night that she wanted me to get out of bed and drive her to her Dad’s house at 2:30 am.  Of course, that will never happen.  She needs to get over it, and I need to figure out how to help her to do so.  When she was very small, she found a skunk skin in the backyard, and from that experience, developed a strong fear of skunks.  It eventually passed, but I tried many things to “cure” it:  stuffed skunks, skunks sweetly portrayed in cartoons, skunk puppets, discussing skunks, songs about skunks – nothing worked except time.

And I guess time is what it will take this time as well.  The good news is that neither of us have seen the following:  “In high populations, however, they have the unusual habit of banding together in army-like groups and may be seen crawling across fields or highways in large numbers.”  This is what the Colorado State University Department of Cooperative Extension says happens sometimes.  Thank you, NO.  I doubt we’d ever recover.

Well, time to go check every crack and crevice in the cottage for the creatures in an effort to drive them out before nightfall.  And to set the lightbulb bucket trap in the kitchen.  Say a little prayer for us.

April 2014
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