In early April, my husband and I decided that we were going to put in an Italian garage. AND WHAT IS THAT YOU MIGHT ASK??? See…first you must understand Italian culture to understand the need for an Italian garage. Reason number one for the Italian garage is that most Italians are fair skinned, so staying in the sun too long is not a good option for us. Translated…we will look like a flaming Olympic torch. Reason number two is that we like to sit, eat, and kibitz (this often turns into yelling). Very rarely do we partake in physical activity; unless you count the occasional round of bocce or the obsessive need to clean the house 12 times a day.
Now that this is cleared up…Italians actually convert the garage to a living space. They lay down the ugly green indoor/outdoor carpet that looks like grass; the kind that sends you reeling back to the days of the Brady Bunch where Marsha was screaming “my nose, my nose”. Screens go up on the garage doors so that a cross breeze can go through.
Creating this garage was necessary because 1) I’m a pasty white noodle and 2) I like to sit, eat, and talk but strongly protest any and all physical activity unless it involves obsessive cleaning. Mr. Clean ain’t got shit on me. Normally, Italian garages contain an entire dining room and living room set. We decided to be a little more practical; be it that we have a toddler who can bench press her body weight and turn ours into more of a toy room. Don’t worry though; I did still sneak a patio table in so we can dine out there (no plastic fruit though).
In all, it took a weekend to put it together. My daughter loves to play out there. It’s a great place to relax and let her enjoy outside, but keep her out of the blazing sun because, like me, she’s a white noodle. We have a great breeze that goes through and the screens serve out Operation Contain Child.
Things were going along just swimmingly with the garage for about two months until one weekend in May. Listen Lady, Ant apocalypse had hit. I was going out to water my garden when I collided with a wall of ants that were covering the back door of the garage. They had exploded in one night; from nothing to crawling all over a quarter of the garage and up the walls. There were even winged ants that were flying all over the garage like little suicide bombers. Mind you, it was 7:30 am on a Saturday so this was not the most pleasant of experiences to wake up too.
I called Brett so he could help me clean up this lovely ant disaster. We used the wet/dry vac and sucked up all the ants we could. In the process we noticed that there were some holes in the foundation of the garage where the ants were just pouring out of. It was almost baffling to see them try to escape towards me, instead of retreating inward. Haven’t you learned anything from watching war movies!!!!! Whatever dude. Choose the vacuum or the ant spray.
After a solid hour of hovering, cleaning toys, and shifting through sand we thought we were ant free. We had sprayed hoards of ant spray all over the inside and outside of the garage. Until the next morning; when we did the same thing all over again. This time, we took foam in a can and filled the holes in the foundation. Sprayed the garage and the foundation again. Vacuumed again. Cleaned all the toys. AGAIN. No more ants.
UNTIL THE NEXT MORNING;WHEN THE ANTS WERE STILL ALIVE AND CRAWLING ALL OVER THE GARAGE AGAIN. I was ready to go for the atom bomb for ants at this point. Clearly we had a nest and the queen ant was having her way with me. I would SO pull her hair if we were in a fight. Since I had to go to work, I did not have time to clean and vacuum, so I just sprayed the devil ants and walked out of the garage screaming like a crazy woman. I believe it was something to the effect of “devil be gone, I’m calling in the big guns now boys”. The elderly neighbor that rides his bike around may have given me a strange look and then flashed me his dentures. Sexy.
We were running on Day 3 of Ant apocalypse and clearly our methods were not working. I made an appointment with an exterminator to have to the ants sprayed the next afternoon.
Day 4 of the Ant apocalypse had arrived. The exterminator was scheduled to arrive at 2:00 pm. I woke in the morning and went to view the overnight damage to the garage. But alas…..not a single ant could be found in our lovely Italian garage, full of clean toddler toys. WHAT?!? Had I won? Did I defeat the queen? Was this a mind game she was playing with me after my threat?
I ended up canceling the exterminator for that day. And by golly was that a mistake….