We have finally decided to address the problem of termites in our garden.
In fact, this is not a fair statement because after work, my husband has been having great fun pouring petrol down them and setting the nests alight for years. The only problem is that this method blatantly does not work.
We also got an old mzee to come over with a bucket and a friend in 2008, to try to poison them - he treated all x112 nests! The old man came over twice with a mate and together they pumped toxic liquid here and there with a syphon. This excercise proved to be one in us throwing a lot of good money straight into the wind - though the pest control man in question was probably a good cause in himself, and no doubt was quite pleased with his thick sheaf of notes.
Now that the termites are in the woodwork and actually eating our house, we got another company to come round and give a quote last weekend. Today, there is a blue overall-ed team of eight men in our garden, all digging holes in search of termite queens. So far they have found 9 live ones!
They are giggling, jolly lot - which is especially endearing in light of the fact that the ground is hard as rock due to the drought - and it's very dusty. At this moment I am in a bit of a panic over whether I have enough tea and bread in the house to go round all of them. In the next hour, our kitchen will be a bit like the loaves and the fishes I suspect.
I have just seen a termite queen for myself - yuk! It wriggles and almost oozes. I seriously wish I had not asked to see one because I am getting a constant stream of 5 year old + fat queen termites brought to me (above). It has now quite put me off my ham sandwich. There was some discussion between the workmen and Gladys and Florence over how people eat them in Kenya - and what human ailments the termite queen might be able to cure, once ingested. There was some talk of the queen being a cure for chest pain.
The garden looks like we have a bad case of 'monster mole invasion' with holes 4 feet deep all over the parched lawn and piles of red earth. I am hoping that when it does finally rain, the grass may recover.
Re: our scarily high electricity bills - we are now looking into solar power - but the initial cost for these units is very high and the panels are as ugly, large and unwieldy as sin. Seeing as we have only one electric water heater which is on a timer switch, no electric oven and only tv, fridge and light bulbs, I'm wondering whether it is our night security lighting that is the culprit?