“I killed my first bug,” I exclaimed!
After two years of traveling and couch-surfing, I finally had my own apartment, and boy was I stoked. Not that killing a bug is something to be proud of, but instead of running to my parents like I did when I was living at home, instead of being afraid, I saw it as me taking control. Don’t get me wrong — bugs are great, just not in my bedroom.
While I was happy to feel strong and independent, I was also a little concerned as to what was just crawling around my room. It was too oddly shaped to be a spider. I knew it wasn’t a silverfish. Whatever it was wasn’t aggressive… or resilient for that matter. I didn’t put too much thought into it — just got a little annoyed when I found more in my shower.
There it was — I figured it out. Crawling out of the disposal in the kitchen sink, a cockroach. Oy vey, roaches?! Really? It was so gross. They weren’t giant, but big enough to give me the creeps.
“It’s Los Angeles and it’s hot out — bugs are normal,” said everyone I talked to. Okay, well, I didn’t sign up for multiple roommates, so I decided to take care of the problem before it got to be too bad… or so I thought.
I laid out roach motels and lined the entire place with boric acid, which is supposed to be a more natural way to get rid of the disgusting critters. Then, I went out to dinner.
I came back to several baby roaches (which I had never seen up until moving into this apartment, hence my confusion as to what they were) chillin’ on the kitchen tile. I screamed. So many crawling on my floor! It was awful!
However, even on the package of boric acid it stated that after lining walls, they may crawl out to open space to get away from the poison, so I felt a little bit better about my situation.
Days passed, and every day I found myself killing at least five cockroaches ranging in size from baby to grandmother. This was not at all what I dreamt my first apartment would be like. I was afraid to buy food because I didn’t want to think of them crawling on it. I was afraid to use the kitchen because they’d crawl out of the sink. I didn’t even like showering because I found one on the shower curtain once. Nothing was safe.
I kept thinking things would get better. I was so excited to have an apartment that was mine; I was not going to let the roaches win.
Another day, five more roaches to get rid of. I asked my neighbors if they were having the same issue and they said they were, but they were also guys who didn’t seem fazed by living with creatures with more legs than them, so I contacted my landlord. Of course, here I am, the newest tenant, causing issues.
“No one else has complained,” she said. “There’s definitely not an infestation — we fumigated before you moved in.”
Finally, she agreed to re-spray the apartment — ha ha! I won. Those roaches couldn’t beat me!!
No. They could.
The number of roaches per day decreased to about three. I figured I’d give it a week, considering everyone said that when you fumigate it’s normal to have some stragglers.
I came home, didn’t see any when I walked in — I was happy. I got in the habit of checking all my clothes and my sheets on my bed (even though everyone said they don’t hang out in beds) before I’d sit on it. I looked on the ceiling in my room, all of the walls…ROACH FREE. It felt amazing.
I started writing on my laptop and saw something out of the corner of my eye. I glanced over but didn’t see anything so I kept writing.
Then, all of the sudden, like it morphed out of the wall: a cockroach.
“BASTARD!” I exclaimed as I picked up my trusty can of Raid.
I walked over to the wall and was about to spray and then IT FELL ON MY DRESSER!
I jumped back — this was not okay. That’s where I keep my clothes! Ugh! I didn’t want roaches crawling on my clothes!! I finally sprayed the sucker and then called my mother sobbing, telling her I failed at being a real adult.
My mom calmed me down, reassuring me that it wasn’t my fault the building had roaches, which I of course knew, but it was nice to hear.
I moved out the next week.