It was one of those annoying Springs you sometimes get in Britain.
Rain and a little sun, then rain, and sun again. Over and over for days.
This meant that the grass in the back garden grew taller and taller and it proved impossible to cut it. Whenever we had a little sunshine the grass was too tall and still wet and it would not cut with the lawn-mower. As it dried and we got ready to cut it, that’s assuming we had nothing better to do at the time, as soon as we got the lawn-mower out it started to drizzle again.
I went out to the shed to put the lawn-mower in again and I noticed just under the roof what appeared to be a large nest of wasps. They were buzzing around all over the place and saying to each other: “Here he is again … shall we have some fun like last year?”
The previous year I had inadvertently disturbed their nest and got stung several times, no doubt to their delight and amusement.
But not this year … revenge will be finally mine.
I quickly got into the house, searched my telephone directory, and rang a Pest Control Firm. I’d never used them before but their name sounded quite proficient: “Pest Control” – Direct and to the point.
About half-an-hour later a small white van with absolutely no signage whatsoever turned up.
“That’s good …” I thought, “very discreet. I wouldn’t want the neighbors to know I have pests … and have them speculate what they could be.”
Mice … rats … cockroaches … fleas … or other vermin. Some neighbors can be quite nosey and would look at me with disdain if they knew I had pests. And let’s face it … some pests are more acceptable than others. Like wasps for instance, and bees, or bats … they are treated with respect and are environmentally more acceptable to society.
Anyway … out of the little white van comes a man in his forties dressed in a yellow T-shirt and blue jeans, and a young lady in her mid twenties dressed in a thin, almost transparent blouse, and the miniest of mini skirts.
Now I’m not a very clever man but I’m sure that a yellow T-shirt is not the ideal apparel. Bright yellow tends to attract flying insects. Even I know that.
But then, maybe this is part of their disguise to fool the neighbors. Perhaps they’ll dress up in overalls and face masks once they’re in my garden to avoid being stung.
They got to the back garden and I warned them that the grass is slippery and wet.
They ignored me and walked all the way to the shed. The man took out a little notebook from his pocket and said: “Let’s see what we have here … asp … adder … bee … bumblebee … cockroach … cricket …”
“Great …” I thought, “he’ll go through the whole alphabets until he finds they are WASPS !!!”
Then, to my amazement, he took a little extendable metal stick from his pocket and opened it out like you do with old style car radio aerials until it was some five feet long. He moved a little closer to the nest, leaving the young lady a few feet behind him, and started poking the nest with the stick.
As I said, I’m not a very clever man, but I knew straightaway that this was not a wise thing to do. I withdrew a little.
The young lady remained a few feet behind him as he disturbed the wasps which started buzzing like a small dark cloud up ahead.
He kept poking, almost destroying the nest, with his stick.
“There are no wasps in this nest” he said to the young lady behind him, “it’s empty”.
She stood there and said nothing.
I shouted “They’re right above your head … you’d better move away quick!”
He looked up at the dark cloud getting nearer and ran away knocking the poor lady so hard that she fell flat on her back sending her legs flying right up in the air.
He then slipped and fell right on his face in the wet grass and mud. He got on all fours and ran towards me like a dog; followed by the young lady doing the same.
They stood up beside me cleaning themselves from the wet mud which covered them from head to toes.
“They’re wasps all right!” he said with authority, as he looked at the poor creatures buzzing around their destroyed nest.
“What do we do now?” I asked.
“Oh … I’ll spray some powder to stop them returning to the nest!” he replied.
He got some powder which he sprayed like a white cloud everywhere; no doubt including his lungs.
I paid him, somewhat reluctantly I must admit, and they left never to be seen again.
As for the wasps; I suppose they built a new nest somewhere else.