Alright, let’s get this out there. This post will be long.
You may have noticed that for the past few weeks the posts have been lamer than usual. That’s because when something horrible happens it’s sometimes too horrible to talk about.
We had bat bugs.
It all began the morning that the Peperkorns came. Lloyd got up before me and when I went downstairs he said, “Something bit me – it was this”. He held out a glass bowl with the offending insect. Time stood still.
“I think that’s a bed bug,” I whispered. I ran to the computer to do a search and the horrifying truth was confirmed.
We had company arriving in less than twelve hours, and panic reigned supreme. There was internet searching, vacuuming, washing, drying, and general frantic running about. Oh, and in the middle of this – Lloyd had to go to Lincoln for graduation. He came back, more frantic cleaning, etc.
The Peperkorns arrived with their camper (thank you, Lord), and took the news well. I, feeling like a complete leper, was super-duper freaked out.
The next weeks were filled with more cleaning and exterminator consulting, and within days we had our first house-dousing of sweet, sweet poison. I know I’m an earth-hugger most of the time, but now I was all about the pesticides, hot water washing and hot, hot dryer-drying.
We’ve searched a vast majority of sites regarding bed bugs, and came across the mention of bat bugs. They look exactly like bed bugs except that 1) they feed on bats and 2) the microscopic hairs on their head are longer than their eyeballs, as opposed to bed bugs – who have hairs shorter than their eyeballs. Lloyd looked at one with a microscope from school, so we were able to identify them.
Having bat bugs is psychologically better than having bed bugs. We only found about a dozen bugs altogether, and now it made sense – they’re living in the attic with the bats. The few that we found must have straggled down when the bats went away to mate. “Mmmmm….. we’re hungry. Let’s go snack on that guy downstairs.” We never found the horrible, horrible infestations that are shown on the internet, but we treated the whole house as if we did. My paranoia is serving me well at this time.
So, that’s that. In the past three weeks we have moved all our upstairs belongings into plastic bags or sealed boxes; are living with 6 shirts and 5 pants/shorts each; have replaced the upstairs carpet; re-painted the upstairs; and are living like we’re camping. (That part is cool.) This summer we will work on evicting the bats and stopping the problem at the core.
I plan on writing the definitive ‘So, you’re living with bat bugs?’ page, and the gory details will be on that, but now we (Brad included) can make realistic posts that include the details of this lovely chapter in our lives. We’re ok now, by the way. We haven’t seen a bug since the first round of three douses of poison. (Standard procedure)
By the way, if I had a time machine, it’s only purpose would be to go back to young Lloyd and Lauren and say, “Um, get rid of the bats.”