Tuesday, June 17, 2014

The Infestation

Previously on Hoarder

An SMS Message:

Kuya, patawagan na uli yung pest control. Nagwawala yung mga daga. Nginatngat yung cooking oil, toyo at lalagyan ng asin. Puro tae yung lamesa. Pakipalinisan ng Domex yung lamesa.

My mom used to tell the maids not to call these rodents by their household name, lest they get back at us by gnawing our belongings. So we created fancy sobriquets like "kumare" and "bubwit" to make references to these pests. The past months, they used to enjoy foraging around the kitchen with leftovers carelessly dumped at the trashcan with a broken lid. Their numbers multiplied, even with the sheets of flypaper laid on the floor to nip the life out of the pesky critters.   

Measures were taken to drive them from their hiding places. Old clothes and other stuff were given away to make room around their stomping grounds. Food items were stored in hard to reach places, and in storage containers that can withstand the most persistent attempts at breaching. The most serious blow to their unchecked population growth happened two weeks ago, when, in my desire to deny these critters sources of food, I bought a new trashcan with a lid that closes every time trash gets in. I was thrilled at the prospects of driving them away, but if there was something nature wanted to teach us about co-habitation, it is that mammals of the lower order learn to adapt to situations humans have forced them into.

With their five-fingered feet, they have started to scale posts they have never ventured before, and in their desire to call our attention, gnawed at plastic containers housing the condiments we used for cooking.

So begins the internecine war of the kitchen.

Their audacity to carry out lightning raids even when the lights are switched on still baffle me. Just this afternoon, I spotted one of the fat ones scampering across the dining table an hour past lunchtime. A few nights ago, a mousy even tried to force open a sealed plastic with snacks I was supposed to eat. And, if I am not mistaken, the tiny granules I saw in my closet were droppings from these critters. As to how they found their way into the tidiest corner of the house, which is my room, is a deliberate taunting. After all, it was me who sparked this insurgency when the mice suddenly found their breadbasket replaced.

It was a full scale retaliation, where an overnight solution may not work. Rat poison is out of the question as there are children who might mistake the pellets for cereal bits. A steady and strategic placements of fly papers could be used to catch some of them, but I was told they no longer work as the gnawers learned not to step foot on these sticky pesticides. The long term solution, which I believe will be rejected by the matriarch and my sister is the distribution of personal effects we no longer needed.

Or maybe, adopting stray cats to let them do the hunting.

These alone, will turn the tide in our favor. Unfortunately, only the maids - and pest control inspectors would support such proposals.


Sepsep said...

I enjoyed reading this story even though it's about rats. *haha* Well, I wish you plenty of luck in your fight against them. They are called pests for a reason, and that reason is infuriating. *grrr*

kalansaycollector said...

i find this post.... cute. hahahaha

i'd go for the pet cat solution. double the fun, double the cuteness! hehe

JM said...


We're on the verge of giving up. Kahit nasa kusina kami, may mga bubwit na kumakaripas ng takbo sa ilalim ng lamesa. :(

Bone C:

The cat solution is the last they would agree on. :(

Sepsep said...

Well, it's either the cats or changing your address. :(