With the rains, which are lovely, come the ten plagues which are not. Instead of frogs, lice, and boils, we get mosquitoes, flies, and ants – each raining down upon us for about a week at a time. Thankfully, plague number 10 is not death of the first-born, but it is a rather annoying flying ant.
These flying ants appear with the early morning, heavy rains, living only minutes before shedding their wings and dying. The result is this:
They are harmless – no stinging, no bites, no poison – yet they remain a nuisance. It’s impossible to sweep them up entirely, as there are always a few hangers-on left clinging to the dead ones – as if trying to revive them, bring them back to life.
Over the weekend, as I attempted to rid our balcony of these little suckers, I tried creating a metaphor for the bugs. Like life, they are fragile – in death, there is beauty. I even tried taking a photo of the dead bugs as I threw them over the side of the patio, thinking that for just a moment, the dead wings looked beautiful as they scattered to the ground. I wanted to find something meaningful in these dying critters.
The reality is – they are bugs. Dead bugs. And a nuisance. I was annoyed to be spending the first few peaceful moments of my morning sweeping up these little buggers instead of enjoying my morning coffee with Lucy at my side. I was irritated to be cleaning them up myself as Justin slept comfortably in our air-conditioned room. I was frustrated that it was the cleaning lady’s day off. Meaning-shmeaning.
And just as I was about to dismiss all hope for meaning in these little bugs, I turned around to find Justin, eyes still heavy with sleep, quietly sweeping up the little pile of dead bugs behind me. So, metaphor for life? Perhaps that’s a stretch. But it’s nice to know there’s someone behind me, cleaning up the bugs.