I am a creature of habit. I like my daily regimen of rising early, having breakfast and catching up on the news of the day since I went to bed. I savor each sip of coffee, ponder the day’s agenda and then I’m ready to hit the ground running with whatever comes my way. But, this morning, it was not ME who decided to hit the ground running, but a centipede. OMG! Well, not to be a drama queen, but I do detest bugs!
So, here’s the scenario. I was sitting at the kitchen table having breakfast, when in my peripheral vision I saw something skittering across the blue braided rug in front of the sink. I stifled the urge to let out a scream and calmly set down my coffee cup. I reached for some napkins to place over the cup and the oatmeal bowl because what if this critter shimmied up the table leg, crossed over the tablecloth and dive-bombed into my breakfast? I sat motionless, frozen to my chair, and looking about, wondering what item in the kitchen was heavy enough to smash him with since I was wearing soft-soled moccasins, thus stepping on him was out of the question. I have never had the ability to simply smash and kill any kind of bug with tissues or paper towel, and quite honestly, even to squash creepy crawlies with my shoe makes my skin crawl. We out-stared one another for several very long minutes, and next thing, lickety-split he was off and running parallel to the lower cupboards, in a narrow space between the rug and the cupboard. Unfortunately, I finally had to blink and then I lost him. Oh no! My floor is colonial red and resembles bricks and there are black flecks throughout the colonial braided rug which made him hard to find. My eyes darted back and forth, peering for him to no avail. He then made one last dash and disappeared under the fridge. In the Summer I am not as diligent about my housekeeping, so I crossed my fingers that perhaps any lingering dust bunnies under the fridge will asphyxiate him. (Oh please, please, please let that happen.) I kind of lost my appetite, and it was soon time to go on my walk anyway, but gee – how I hated to leave him “at large” in the kitchen. I did not turn off the light fearing he would venture out when it was dark and he deemed the coast was clear. Entirely too much angst so early in the morning and sweat already enveloped me before I went outside into the near-one hundred percent humidity. I did an easy three miles, and upon returning from my walk, my eyes scanned every inch of the kitchen. Nothing! Whew! Was it safe to open the fridge door and get a cold drink or would that trigger movement and he’d run over my feet? More angst, but did it anyway; so far, so good.
Here’s how this story plays out. I spend ninety percent of my day in the kitchen since I work from home, thus it is important to know his whereabouts, or risk spending my entire day with one eye trained under the fridge and the other on the computer screen. The test will come early tomorrow morning when I flick on the kitchen light, which undoubtedly will cause him to run from his hiding place before my still, sleep-bleary eyes. I will ensure I don a pair of hard-soled, stompin’ shoes, I’ll try not to scream and I’ll take my yardstick to whack him with. Query: do you think this is what Teddy Roosevelt meant when he said “Speak softly and carry a big stick; you will go far.”????????