It Was Dark and Stormy Night

“I am surrounded by dead bodies. I sit quietly, watching, for I will kill again. The crushed and twisted remains lie strewn across the tables on either side of me, a testament to my determination. I am without remorse.”

This is my version of, “it was a dark and stormy night.”

Mosquito Season started last night, at our country house. It began for us at about 9:30 p.m. last night. The beginning of Mosquito Season, as I define it, is distinctive. It begins when I hear a mosquito humming near my head, or feel it tickle the hair on my arm, or land on me, or at worst, bite me, as I sit in the living room or lie in my bed. Having killed that one maddening source of itchy irritation, another materializes to take its place. As soon as the newcomer has been destroyed, another moves in to take its place. And so the day goes, one mosquito after another, all day long, and all night long.

How these mosquitoes get into the house is unknown. They have their ways. There are certainly fewer of them if we ensure that the dampers on the fireplace and wood stove are completely closed. It helps, when coming in from outdoors, to stand quietly in the screened in porch for a little while, killing as many of the hitchhiking mosquitoes as possible, before opening the door to the interior of the house. But, no matter how careful we are, at the beginning of mosquito season, when we seat ourselves to relax, mosquitoes will line up, waiting their turn to take their chance at a meal, at our expense.

If it weren’t for West Nile Virus this could be ignored more easily. But the threat of disease makes the presence of mosquitoes a bit dangerous, in addition to irritating.

Soon the dragonflies will be out and about, and they love to eat the mosquitoes. I love to watch the dragonflies as the dip and dive to eat their fill. It helps that their activity improves my experience of the natural world.

On the other hand, the black flies have made a quick exit, and are few and far between. They will make a repeat appearance later in the summer, but for now we are relieved of their presence.

One has only to live in the bush to understand this obsession with insects. They are small, but their impact is mighty indeed, particularly when they exist in great numbers.

Bright and early I was out in the screened in porch, with my scissors and spoon and trays of seed pots. I transplanted a stevia plant into a large container, in hopes that in turn it will grow large. I filled my 20 newspaper plant pots with soil, inserted a single basil seed into each one, covered each lightly with soil, watered each carefully, and placed the trays in the screened in porch, where the sun will shine on them for part of the day. They will be safe from hail and animals in the screened in porch. I hope they come up before we next visit the little house in the city!

A few stems had fallen off the portulaca plants I purchased, so I put those into a cup of water thinking they might root. The portulaca will not be planted in the deck planter for another week at least, as I am waiting till the likelihood of frost has passed.

Yesterday’s mail brought yet another missive from the former employer, the one who has been so miserable to deal with for the last two years. This time they sent a document, that they categorically refused to send me previously, a stance on their part that was sent to me in writing. Now they have backtracked and sent the document, which we had already worked around. This means another letter to a government agency, and further complications.

This company is truly as bad as it sounds, and I feel genuine pity for all of their previous employees, and customers in this area. If there was ever a company that deserved to fail, in my opinion, they are it. They still own companies in the city, which I would never do business with.

So I was correct in being superstitious, it is not yet over with them. It seemed to good to be true, being free of the torture of dealing with their energy. It has been almost a year since they laid me off, and announced that the doors were closing. That is almost a year of time spent dealing with, on my own time, their incompetence or malice (not sure which, maybe both).

This is the contents of the last fresh food basket. Actually it arrived in a cardboard box, but calling it a basket works for me.

Worldly Distractions


Condition: Mist
Pressure: 100.8 kPa
Visibility: 8 km
Temperature: 17.2°C
Dewpoint: 15.8°C
Humidity: 92%
Wind: SSE 11 km/h


“It is our responsibilities, not ourselves, that we should take seriously.”
Peter Ustinov
1921 – 2004

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Whenever our dogs have been outside and come back into the house… we’ve got little flying bugs around. I think they latch onto their thick furs and hitch a ride in. I have fly swatters both upstairs and downstairs, at the ready, to swat…


Hmmm…. Attila isn’t all that hairy, but for his head, which would be a perfect place to hide, particularly at the back of the head, where the humming would not be heard!


Do you remember the story of Jack the Giant Killer? He had a belt which had emblazoned on it “Seven at One Blow.” The villagers, thinking him a mighty warrior, hired him to do away with the giant.

And thereby hangs a tale. No he didn’t kill seven mosquitoes at one blow, but nearly as good, seven flies at once. The mighty hunter.

So glad that you are in the literary folktale mainstream. Your heroic exploits inspire and awe us. Fight on!


Sarah, I wonder if I need a cape? 🙂