Living in Timber Valley comes with its problems. Towards the end of October I noticed a few tiny flying moths in my kitchen (mostly around the night light), hanging out on my lamp shades in the living room, and flying around my head in bed while trying to read. I brushed them aside and ignored them. As November rolled around, the moth population started to increase by huge numbers. At night my cheap Fred Meyer lampshades were covered with them. My “Freak Show” night light in the hallway was also all but blacked out by the tiny creepy things. The small infestation had become a major irritation and a worrisome problem for me. I hate the flying bugs when they come in big numbers. I’m a little obsessive about them swarming near my head. When one actually flew up my nose as I was reading Joan Didion’s “Blue Nights” I lost it. Then I accidentally sucked one down with my coffee while reading “The Emperor of All Maladies ” by Sid Mukherjee. I had a situation on my hands. No flying dusty insect would break my concentration!
I remember my grandma fighting the same sort of problem. She called these horrible little flyers “moth millers” and if she found even a single one we’d have to go through all of her cupboards, look through the flour, cornstarch and even check her parakeet’s birdseed to see if the tiny caterpillars from the “miller” eggs had hatched out to eat our food. So my first defense was to go through my entire kitchen and all of the food for anything resembling a “miller worm”. No luck. Sorry, grandma.
One night I actually dreamed that the moths were flying out of my electric plugs to do their evil business while I was asleep.
When I found them inside my car I called neighbors. YES neighbors were having the same problem and it wasn’t coming from our cupboards. We were being attacked. Everyone had tried some trick to get rid of them. We started counting how many we could smash during the evening. It was a contest. Ron got out the vacuum…The Dirt Devil with Bagless Power. We thought it was helping but each night a fresh platoon of moths joined the battle. Then my favorite neighbors found the answer. Jeff, a Search and Rescue Hero, and his wife, the brave librarian from Klickitat School, found what may clear our houses of moths…forever. Here is Sara’s sworn statement:
MOTHMAN (SWORN STATEMENT)
Living up on Walton’s Mountain (as my brother refers to Timber Valley) is like living in a totally separate climate region from the gorge. Summers are 10 degrees cooler, which gives us relief from the usual hot days, but we are also 10 degrees cooler in the winter, which means we often have snow and ice whereas “down below” they don’t. I’m not sure if our crazy topsy-turvy weather of late has anything to do with our “little moth problem” but we have lived here 15 years and have never had to share our home with these little shits.
They dive at our plates of food at dinner time, they swarm the lamps at night, they collect on the window outside the door and all make a run inside when I’m not sneakier than they are. It seems they come in cycles. Jeff (SARS Rookie of the Year for Klickitat County) points out that my obsessive behavior with the vacuum cleaner hose in hand makes it hard to watch TV when I fire it up every ten minutes to capture our enemies. I want to suck those buggers down.
When touched they disintegrate into powder. We’ve torn our house apart looking for hiding places. We find nothing but dust bunnies. I was having whole conversations with anybody that would listen about how to get rid of the little buggers. Finally, when Jeff was as sick of them as I was (or of listening to me complain) He searched the internet. He found NoSquito!!, my foot tall new best friend. We set him on the fireplace mantel. He emits a soft bluish glow so he doubles as a nightlight! The soft sound of the fan inside is somehow soothing and assures me that our catch will not escape. Looks like we found the solution to the moth problem, wonder if it works on crazed deer? Sara
So now we wait. Will the NoSquito (by Stingo) solve the problem? I hope to Hell it does. If it doesn’t I may start flinging myself toward the bulbs. The war in Iraq may be officially ended but this one continues on the mountain. Good night John Boy.
Merry Christmas to everyone.