Friday, 28 August 2009


I try to be green. But on occasion my laziness overrides my green instinct.
This usually means throwing out a baking sheet if it is coated in my disastrous attempt at cookies. After all there is more to life than wasting 30 minutes of my time trying to remove a sticky biscuity mess from a £4.99 baking sheet.

I have binned other household items in the past when the task of cleaning them was overwhelming.

Shouty released some diarrhoea into the bath sometime ago.

It was an underwater cloud of poo.

Successfully removing all the little floaty crumbs of poo from his bath seat was something I wasn’t prepared to do.

So I didn’t and got a new one for £8.

When it comes to muck I’d rather get rid and get new than spending time fixing up.

If I had used the same logic on Monday I would’ve ditched the house.
Yes, I would’ve moved the family on.
Just drawn a proverbial line under the 1920s end of terrace and started again somewhere new.

My reason for this?


Thousands of the little wiggly bastards.

I’m pretty sure their residency in my brown “composting/garden waste” bin was down to me and my cutting corners.

(There’s that Catholic guilt again.)

I had been ignoring some strawberries for a few days and when I finally got round to eating them they’d gone a bit fluffy.

I ate about a ¼ of the huge box before throwing the rest of the rotting fruit straight into the brown garden waster wheelie bin. Chucked in, not in a recycling bag or even wrapped in newspapers or anything.

Not only was I being lazy but I was also being a complete thick.

What did I think was going to happen?

The bin is opened frequently for more food to be added. And the stench of rotting food in warm weather certainly draws an insecty crowd.
Even if the bin is closed the flies can get in through the little fly doors, also known as air vents, at the side of the bins.

And in they went.

The strawberries were rejected and slung in the bin on Wednesday, I think.

By Saturday we had company.

I wasn’t sure at first but as I took another bag of kitchen waste out I kinda knew there would be happy maggoty babies squirming around keen for more putrid food to be dumped on them.

(I just shuddered. It’s not just snakes that trigger it.)

The former strawberries were now greeny/black and had melted into the other bags that were at the bottom of the brown wheelie. And the maggot pups were, as far as I could see, doing their thing on top of the pile. Not loads but enough.

I thought about the maggots and how warm the weather was going to be that day and about all the rotting food that was decomposing outside my nice family home.
I thought about it all for, oooh, moments before I put it to the back of my mind.

Husband and I were going away for the night. Without the babies! See ya!

As an aside, does it interest you to know I am currently working my way through a box of (unfluffy) strawberries? That’s commitment to a fruit isn’t it?

We had a lovely time away and I honestly forgot about the houseguests until Monday morning: I went out to the bins and counted 14 bluebottles on top of the brown one.

Ohhh, so it really happens, I thought. Maggots actually turn into flies. That’s what I’d always, you know, been told, but there I was, living it.

(I am a total cretin.)

I dared myself to (slowly mind) lift the lid and I nearly puked. Oh my giddy aunt, the bags were writhing.
Each compost bag, 4 in total, was moving.

(More shuddering.)

This sounds OTT but it really was like something out of a horror film. Or worse: Total Fishing!

There was only one thing I could do: call my mother in law.

I’ve thought about this a lot and it wasn’t really the flies that worried me. Don’t get me wrong, they are a damned nuisance but the maggots are hideous freaky yukky creatures of nightmares.
In my mind the maggots would get bigger.
And bigger.
And the probably morph into a one giant maggot.
This is a genuine real life thought I had.
Terrifying on so many levels.

Anyway, my amazing mother in law got the call, went to Homebase and came back armed with industrial strength gloves, fly spray and as much Jeyes Fluid as she could carry. She’s a trooper at the best of times but I think the sight of her scooping handful after handful of maggots into a black bin bag without even flinching will stay with me to the end of my days.

I wasn’t able to take a photo of the bin when the maggot population was largest on account of me being a wuss. There stood my mum in law, arm deep in fly foetuses whilst I made ridiculous terrified yelping noises from the security of my living room.

I have uploaded a maggot image I was able to take when most of them had passed.
Some of the stragglers, who hadn’t been popped into a refuse sacks after they were sprayed with Jeyes Fluid, continued to crawl around my front garden for quite some time. Ages actually. And by mid afternoon I wasn’t even disgusted by these survivors.

I accepted them.

But I was glad when it rained and they all died.

Strawberry anyone?

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