Saturday, 29 October 2011

Wasps Attack

Posted by Tania Kindersley.

So, last night, I climbed up the stairs to bed. Nothing remarkable about that, you might think. It was clean sheet day, so I was looking forward to a lovely, comfortable sleep.

Walked into the room. Turned on the light.


I’m not joking. And they weren’t sweet, sleepy autumn wasps. They were furious crack regiment wasps, and they were flying at my head.

I’m ashamed to say I shrieked like a girl.

First of all, I tried to kill them with deodorant. I know that the Buddhists believe that all creatures are sacred and should not be randomly murdered, but I had no time for milk of human kindness. You may also be wondering about the deodorant thing. Well, I just reached for anything that sprayed. I got a spare out of the cupboard, so I went in double-handed. I think at one stage I may actually have shouted DIE DIE, but I might be imagining that part.

It wasn’t that effective. The wasps just got more furious. I swear reinforcements were coming in the open window. I was seriously outnumbered.

Then I remembered that I had some Raid somewhere. There followed a frantic Hunt for Raid. This took some time. The buzzing got louder and louder.

I found the Raid. Now the fuckers would rue the day. Ha. I got about half of them, almost asphyxiating myself in the process. The Pigeon stayed in close order for excellent moral support. Then the Raid ran out. Phhtt, phtt the can went, and that was that. The remaining wasps mustered, ready to avenge their slaughtered comrades. Back to the deodorant.

I could not get them all, and I’m afraid I ceded the field. I would have been pathetic in the war. (I always think of those SOE women and how courageous they were under fire. I am defeated by wasps.)

I slammed the bedroom door, to keep the buggers in, and went to sleep on the sofa. My sofa is very long and comfortable and covered in lovely blankets; it’s not sleeping in a tent outside St Paul’s Cathedral; but even so. I feared I might have strange wasp nightmares, but in the end I dreamed of having a new sofa delivered. The Prime Minister himself delivered it, carrying it up three flights of stairs and giving me a big kiss afterwards. That’s Her Majesty’s Government: service with a smile. What can this mean? I suspect even Jung would be stumped.

This morning, I had to be brave and go and inspect the battlefield. The room was quiet. (Too quiet.) There were dead wasps everywhere, curled up into sad little apostrophes. I felt faintly remorseful.

I cleared them all away and wondered what would happen tonight. Will their cohort arrive, to punish me for doing away with their fallen fighters? Where does a wasp swarm even come from, at midnight on a Friday? Will I ever sleep quietly in my bed again?


Pictures of the day are of the trees. It was a dull old day, but even so, the colours really are going crazy guns:

29 Oct 1

29 Oct 2

29 Oct 3

29 Oct 4

29 Oct 4-1

29 Oct 6

29 Oct 6-1

29 Oct 7

29 Oct 8

29 Oct 9-1

The Pigeon wandered off, and I went to look for her and found her skulking about in the yard, looking very guilty. I think she has found some secret stash of something down there, although I don't know what it is. I decided the old tractor looked very charming, so I made her pose in front of it, which she thought was excessively silly. Look at her face:

29 Oct 9

29 Oct 10

29 Oct 11

Then we went and threw the stick, so that cheered her up:

29 Oct 17-1

Today's hill:

29 Oct 15

I gather from the comments that there are some new readers this week. There is almost nothing that delights me more than new readers, so: Welcome. And thank you for coming.


  1. After asking for a photo of the brothers' purple shoes (which you so kindly granted!), I would have liked a picture of a thousand dead wasps in your bedroom ... thus saying, the autumnal pictures are simply lovely - down south we haven't got quite such a display - the trees are greenish/brownish.

  2. Oh I love the pictures of the Pigeon this week, and think that I would have reacted similarly to the wasps. Other people's dreams are often dull but yours sounds frankly charming! I hope there is not another reason to sleep on the sofa tonight.

  3. Wasps=nightmare. I am impressed that you could sleep on the sofa, I would have had to move at least two counties away! You are very brave. I hope you enjoy the extra hour of sleep tonight!

  4. Oh my god! This brings back many painful memories of when I lived in the top flat of an old Victorian Vicarage and one October was invaded by wasps for about a week! They were coming in from a hole in the wall and were massive!! One morning sans glasses or contact lenses one thought it would be nice to join me for a shower! My very own 'Psycho' shower scene nightmare!! I still jump when I hear them buzzing at the window! Well done for being so brave with the raid, I would have run!!

  5. Excellent idea to vacate.
    Wasps, unlike bees whose lives depend on that single sting, can (and do) bite repeatedly, their venom diminishing with each subsequent sting. Maybe because it's not a life or death choice -- I don't know -- but I find wasps particularly aggressive and mean. They go after you just for the "heck" of it. You were very lucky to escape unscathed!
    We had to call the community "insect fighter" to smoke out a big wasp nest on our open veranda. He arrived dressed like those government scientists at the end of the film "E.T."
    Is there a nest on the wall or where the roof meets the wall (words are failing me all over the place today!) outside your bedroom window? Are there any tiny fissures in your interior/ exterior wall?
    Don't use your bedroom until you've gotten rid of these pests.

    PS Autumn looks glorious in Scotland. Belgium is on the grey side atmospherically and it "dulls down" the otherwise brilliant autumnal hues. (Bleck!)

  6. Am back to the land of internet connectivity! for some reason I could read the blog and found it very hard to open comments columns!

    I thought wasps first stung you and then later decided what else to do~

  7. May I add that it might be nice to scrub down everything that took Raid full-blast in the battle? I imagine you already took that into account, though. It's not only bad for wasps, but probably not too hot for humans and dogs to breathe in either.

    That said, ewwwww to wasps.

    PS Hair spray works well in bug attacks too. Alas, I hate the slight remorse after (those Buddhists have something, but one has to wonder if whoever formulated that belief did so while beset by wasps or spiders).

  8. Am distracted from the wasps by the COLOURS - wow! It is so beautiful where you like I'm forced to use CAPITALS.

  9. As one of the new readers I feel I should thank you for your kind welcome and tell you how delighted I am to be reading a blog that allows itself to call the wasps fuckers.

    Excellent and very descriptive writing.


  10. I'm glad to hear that you escaped unscathed. I enjoyed reading your was like sitting down with a friend and laughing together over escapades. As for shrieking (not to mention whooping and hollering), I've done my share, most recently when I experienced my own surprise wasp attack while trimming the hedge, and I flung my trimmers off in some unknown direction as I tore down the hill to the house to dig around and locate the homeopathic sting gel as soon as possible. (I went back afterwards and hurled myself at them with success).

    I can't get enough of the colors in your photos. Just gorgeous!

  11. The colours are beautiful in your photos but the Pigeon outshines the lot. x

  12. Awful about the wasps; however, what really fascinated me was that you had SPRAY deoderant. Goodness, I don't think we've had that in Canada for 20 years, something about the ozone layer. I do remember it fondly though, would regularly find its way into the nostrils.

  13. Wasps attack is really a horrible experience that I don't even want to imagine!
    Anyway, something natural, risk-free and effective way on how to get rid of wasps will be great. At last, those wasps nightmare will totally be no more!


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