The Tenants–A True Nightmare

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peep hole

We have been living in our apartment for three months now.  Three very long months of being terrorized daily by the former tenants.  But despite their status as former tenants, they have been living here too.  THEY NEVER LEFT.  I wake up in the morning and they are in my bathroom, just hanging out by the sink all like, “Yo! Where’s breakfast?”

In the kitchen, they use my sugar without asking, even when I hide it.  Though that seems to be the only thing they really want in the kitchen.  And chocolate cookies.  I have to hide those in the back of the fridge now.

And just when you think you are alone again, they are there sitting across from you at the dining room table. (!!!) I am starting to think I will never be alone again.  Privacy?  In my own home?  Not anymore.  Not living here.  I even found one of them in the kiddo’s bed!!! That is going too far.  You do not mess with my little one! It’s starting to make me really angry.  I’ve tried the following to get them to leave:

  • Politely insisting this is my home now.  I signed papers, I paid the rent; they need to leave.
  • Politely making the home inhospitable to them.  Nothing seems to work—leaving things super messy, keeping things super clean, spraying vinegar everywhere… no dice.  They just don’t seem to mind either way.
  • Yelling at them.  I have used words I use for no one on this planet.  I will not share those words.  I started by using them in my head only (probably not effective), then quietly sharing those words so the kiddo won’t hear.  The kiddo isn’t really bothered by their presence—I guess she doesn’t realize that when you move into a place, the former tenants are supposed to move out.

So yeah.  Nothing has worked.  But I can’t take it anymore.  What alternate universe am I living in where it is okay for the former tenants to just be hanging around all the time???

So I have decided to kill them.

I know, quite a jump from yelling obscenities in my head to plotting their demise, but what else can you do?  My landlord said this is just what happens when you live in the tropics.  But I can’t accept this strange new cultural norm.  So what shall it be? Poison?  Blunt force trauma?  I am at my wits end!  I feel I will soon go on a rampage killing each and every one of them.  And the guilt.  Oh the guilt!  I am going to have to box off part of my psyche just to deal with the horrible murderousness of it all.

This is such an overwhelming situation.  But a girl’s got to do what a girl’s got to do.  Especially to keep strange beings out of her child’s room.

Poison it shall be.  The plan: they eat the poison and then take it back to their “queen,” thereby killing the whole colony.  Some queen she is.  She ought to go and get her own territory and get her minions out of mine.  If they won’t get out amicably, I am going to have to take them all down.

And it seems to be working, for the most part.  I no longer find them hanging around the bathroom at all hours of the day, and it has been ages since one has been chilling out in the kiddo’s room.  I am very thankful for that.  And they seem to have been thwarted by the rubber bands I put on all the dining room table legs, as they no longer try to share mealtimes with me.

However, the kitchen is still a battlefield.  I plead with them!  “What do you want?!?!  Just tell me and I will give it to you, if you promise to GO AWAY!”  But they ignore me.  It’s like I don’t even exist to them.  It makes me hate my landlord for having these horrible tenants in the first place, who refuse to listen to reason and get out of my home.

And the guilt?  It is horrendous! More and more poison is being used every week, with more and more bodies littering the floor.  I feel guilty when I vacuum up the bodies.  And it’s just plain gross.  But what can you do?  At least my family is now safe.  I have grown “a pair” to man up and keep the kitchen under control.  But I still feel horrible about it, especially when I see them talking to each other right before I squash them.  I wish they would leave us alone, so I wouldn’t have to be the black angel of ant death anymore on a daily basis.

But as they say, I live in the tropics now.  And ants will be ants.  Some days it bothers me more, some days less.  Just another thing to get used to out here I suppose.

Jennifer Jasensky is a Dubai resident, United States transplant, former mathematics teacher and dancer/choreographer. She is an outgoing homebody and perpetual idealist whose love of learning knows no bounds. She is most happy enjoying a good book with a plate of kaya toast, runny eggs, and kopi-c peng siew dai, but now that she has moved from
Singapore to Dubai, drinking an iced latte in the ocean is fast becoming her happy place.

2 thoughts on “The Tenants–A True Nightmare

  1. This is so great. At first I thought it was people who were invading your home, then you find out that it is ants.

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