There were ants in the kitchen - one of the hazards of living in South America. They weren’t giant Indiana Jones ants, but rather Peruvian ants - meaning smaller than average, yet extremely hard working and persistent.
A trail of these led from the garage, through doorways, across the breakfast area, under a counter, behind the stove, and to the sink. Each linear foot of trail contained at least a hundred of the little guys. My Rainman calculations put their numbers at between two and three thousand, and that was what I could see. I feared that many more would replace them. Last night, with nothing more than a paper towel, I killed about three hundred. Spartans they weren’t, because that didn’t even make a dent.
I headed down the street to the local grocery store, where I knew they have a section of ant-killers. I had already decided to find something that wasn’t allowed for use in the U.S., and if the label stated “contains DDT” it would be a sure sale.
I selected a product made by Sapolio, a company whose cleaning products are sold here. Their logo is a friendly little frog.
This cute little guy was on the front of the can, too. Holding a blunderbuss. He had the same friendly smile on his face that you see above, but with the addition of the gun, became too disturbing to post on the internet. At the bottom of the label, it stated “mata de verdad,” which means “really kills,” but it didn’t quite translate in my head. The literal meaning is “it kills from truth.”
As I was picking up the spray can, I spotted my next purchase. A little package of granules, not much larger than a small candy bar, that must be mixed with several gallons of water and sprayed outside. What got my attention? Let me just say that sometimes a brand name sells a product.
I took my WMDs home, and began wiping out thousands of these little pests. I even pulled dishes out of the lower cabinets to treat in places I thought they might run. I was cutting off their escape routes, funneling them to their deaths. All that tactical training was finally coming in handy.
Solving my ant problem must have made me really happy, because my eyes got all teary, and I got the sniffles. I also got a bit of a twitch in my right hand, which I am sure was from holding the spray can. The ants are gone, but maybe keeping some Atropine around the house isn't such a bad idea.