Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Real Friends Take Care of Your Maggots

I've been very fortunate to have found an amazing community of women whom I am blessed to call my friends; they're supportive, compassionate and always entertaining. With that out of the way I have to say, I'm winning the Best Friend Ever award along with Loyal Friend #1.

Three of us got together for Coffee & Conversation and our hostess was having a bit of a fruit fly problem. She'd spent the better part of three days on a bleach and Lysol bender trying to eradicate the pesky flies from her kitchen and had resorted to a darling little dish of vinegar and Dawn at the sink for pest control - thank you, Pinterest! The topic was soon forgotten as we moved on to the more pressing matters of preschool politics, curling irons and holiday plans. 

Midway through our morning, the kids came bouncing down the stairs to regale us with tales from their bountiful imaginations. All four of them were twirling around, dressed to the nines in old Halloween costumes and Christmas dresses, acting out a story about little bugs that were flying around upstairs in a bedroom. Loyal Friend #1 was really getting into it, acting it out with them and adding her own twists to the tale. Bless her oblivious little heart; it was sweet while it lasted.

Hostess and I made eye contact and you could see the wheels turning as we came to the same conclusion, silently mouthing Fruit Flies? to one another over the heads of our unsuspecting children and LF#1. We asked the kids to show us the bugs and they were only too happy to oblige, all seven of us trucking up the stairs as they exclaimed "There's a jillion of 'em!" The moms were moving noticeably slower than the kids and my stomach was starting to knot up; Hostess was already gagging and sweet, sweet LF#1 was still clueless.

Our fears were only too realized as we walked into the bedroom and came upon a swarm of fruit flies large enough to carry away the Fisher Price kitchen set that they were hovering around. The little sink was full of an unidentifiable, thick, brown liquid that seemed to be dripping from behind the door of the miniature microwave. Hostess was covering her face with her hands and I had pulled up the cowl neck of my sweater so as to minimize the likelihood of my inhaling any of those little mothers. LF#1 barreled into the room, still not fully aware of the situation and literally jumped and screamed when she saw what the rest of us were already recoiling from.

Hostess and I backed up and made LF#1 open the microwave door to just exactly what horrors lay behind it. And oh, was it ever horrific: a ginormous pile of brown goo that was teeming with fruit flies and maggots. Hostess was already halfway down the stairs, gagging all the way and racing for the bleach. The kids were pretty sure it was a granola bar but I'm positive that those don't melt; I deduced that it had been, at one time, a banana and was now simply a feeding station for larvae.

Hostess was completely out of commission, face ashen, as she battled back from the brink of a nervous breakdown. LF#1 and I got to work, shipping the kids downstairs so we could chemical bomb the room.

Us, to hostess: "You probably shouldn't let your child sleep in this room tonight."

Her near-tears response: "How long has she been sleeping in this bug infested room to begin with?!?!" We figured later that the offending banana had been festering for two weeks since the kitchen had been moved upstairs from its former place in the living room. We discussed a new idea that perhaps children are best kept in the dining room with food.

Once the chem bomb was unleashed I started working my MacGyver magic with a few garbage bags and some duct tape; I fashioned up a makeshift gunny-sac that we used to contain the entire kitchen set, then we tossed it outside so Hostess could simply point it out to her husband and allow him to deal with it. For our money, LF#1 and I would have pitched that kitchen in a quick little minute but Hostess and her husband are pretty sure it can be redeemed.

The entire experience was hilarious, at best, traumatic, at worst. But perhaps the most disturbing part of the entire incident came nearly a week later when I was back at Hostess's house for coffee; not only was the "redeemable" kitchen still sitting on the back patio, wrapped in all its plastic glory, but this little gem was sitting on the couch. If my lens was faster I'd have caught the best part: the fruit fly sitting atop the banana, having a little munch. The moral of the story is this: Good Friends handle your maggots for you. But only once.


  1. You have no idea how glad I am that I realized I'd misread this phrase: "...a ginormous pile of brown goo..."

    Because I thought it said "poo."


    Okay, that banana you spotted when you later visited? Evidence that people with fruit flies in their houses probably deserve them.

    Not that we had a crazy major outbreak here last month.