February 21st, 2010

If you’re looking for some romantic babblings about how I spent Valentine’s Day with my husband even though we’re a Commuter Couple you’ve come to the wrong place. That kind of crap never works out that way in my life.

Bitter much?

During the winter months one of the hardest things about both of us living in the Snow Belt is trying to time our drives while dodging snowstorms.

As you might recall, Valentine’s Day fell on a Sunday this year and on Monday the 15th I was flying out from my home state for business.

With a concern for my safety we had been meticulously tracking the weather at both ends for days. Sunday seemed like the perfect day to travel as there was no snow forecasted for V-Day.

Imagine my surprise when I woke up only to find that I could barely see out the patio because of the heavy snow!

Again, we checked the weather channels and websites at both ends, “Snow showers,” it said. “Road conditions clear.”

“That’s a snow shower??” I asked, incredulous. “I’d hate to see a blizzard!”

Luckily (or so it seemed at the time) the snow where hubby lives tapered off and by 1:30 or 2pm, things looked good on that end. We began packing the car.

It is always sad when we begin packing out. It is a solemn affair. It feels just as terrible as it did when I was packing up to go back to college, leaving my home, leaving my family. Now I’m leaving my heart.

The road north was not bad. For the first 45 minutes. After that it became a nightmare. While it wasn’t actively snowing (at this point) the road was snow packed and drivers who had any sense were forced to drive well below the allotted speed limit.

For the first time I was grateful I’d left the cats with Mr. J. I had not looked forward to having the house to “myself” for the next couple of weeks. It is lonely being the only living thing in the house. But with the delays in the drive time I’m glad I’d opted to leave them instead of having our fabulous cat sitter watch them.

As I reached the last 100 miles of the trip, and as the sun began to sink, the snow began to fall, harder, driving down so fast I could barely see in front of me.

By the time I got home I was almost shaking from the stress of the drive. A drive that took two and a half hours longer than normal.

I walked into the house, carrying as much as I could in that first haul and again found myself grateful I’d left the cats. (Look for silver linings whenever you can.) Without them here I could prop open the garage door as I hauled my booty in from the car.

Only as I sat down the freezer bag on the counter did I realize:
I. Was. Not. Alone.

When I had flipped on the lights in the kitchen I had frozen in place hundreds and hundreds of ants!

The kitchen was CRAWLING with them.

I literally screamed! Like a little girl! Oh yes! I’m not ashamed to say it: I hate bugs!

Once again I thanked God I had left the cats with Mr. J. With my own skin crawling, I reached into the area under the sink and grabbed out a can of Raid for ants.

How well prepared, you might be thinking. Well. The last time they turned up I had people over for Easter dinner and spilled a little pineapple juice on the floor. When Mr. J called me into the kitchen it was literally a swarm of those nasty little beasts. That spring we could never seem to get rid of them so in desperation I bought some Raid and locked the cats upstairs for a few days. But I digress.

Screaming (this time like a warrior going into battle), I am spraying everything in the kitchen knowing that I will have to completely clean out my cabinets and wash every piece of equipment in my kitchen before I use it. I trace the little beasties, looking for their trail…there is always a trail.

As I rounded the corner in my kitchen I slip on the bug spray, of course, and down I go.

Hard.

The good news? I killed a few of the marauders with my rather generous backside when I fell.

The bad news? My rather generous backside hurts and I have to board a plane in the morning for a business trip and now my skin is crawling even more!

That night, as I’m nursing a painful hip, I flip on the TV to find out what is up with this snow and will I be able to fly out. I hear the meteorologist say, “Well, this one caught us by surprise.”

Ya think??

I turned off the TV disgusted.

It’s been a week since that “lovely” Valentine’s Day. I’ve been asked several times if I miss having the cats in the house. The truth is: Yes. Thinking back to when was the last time I was in my own home without at least a furry friend I realize it was in college. And then I had roommates: though with most of them I was grateful when they didn’t come home.

It is odd to be the only living thing in the house.

At least I hope the ants are dead.