Here in North Texas the dog days of summer have been replaced by the cricket days of fall.
The other night, on garbage-eve, I rolled the industrial-sized blue monster away from the house and cricket central came alive from underneath it. Now, if there’s one thing I hate more than garbage duty, it’s a surprise attack from a secret sect of stowaway crickets. I find any creature that comes flying out at me not particularly enjoyable, especially when it’s the end of the day and my reflexes are shot from wrangling kids.
I dragged the blue beast out to the curb and nearly stepped on a toad the size of my head on the sidewalk. Apparently camping out under a street lamp provided an all-you-can-eat buffet of crickets and other critters. He must have been full because he didn’t even budge. Good thing. You know how I hate things hopping out at me.
I wouldn’t mind the crickets if they’d stay outside, but invariably some have made it indoors. Uninvited. I found one under the dining room hutch the other day, attempting to out-hop a dust bunny. The dust bunny won. He scrambled for awhile, trying in vain to free his legs, but those dust bunnies don’t give up easily or fight fair. I had to walk away.
A few others decided to serenade us late at night, conjuring up my memories of church camp. I fell asleep humming kum-by-ya and longing for a s’more. Others I’ve scooped up with a scrap of paper and flung outdoors for the toads and frogs. It’s not that I think they’re sacred and won’t kill one. I can’t stand the crunch when you smoosh it, so it’s easier to serve them up as an outdoor appetizer.
We have a storm blowing in today, and I’m wondering what season approaches now. The lizard days of October? Fine, as long as they don’t jump out at me.