Tag Archives: cockroaches

New Orleans Diary: Week Five

30 Dec

Goal: To keep a weekly diary of my time here in New Orleans. This is Week 5! Which means I have been living here for over a month. And also it has been almost two whole months since I left Brooklyn which is pretty crazy. Hi, Brooklyn. Do ya miss me?

Waterbugs, Information: You may recall that last week I saw a waterbug in my bathroom and subsequently hid from the bug, also the bathroom, for a considerable amount of time following the sighting. Then the bug mysteriously disappeared. Dun dun duuuuuun. I then posted about the bug on my Facebook page at which point I received all kinds of comments. Some of them were full of concern, some were full of disgust and vomit emojis, and some were from people welcoming me to Life in the South. As a result of the post, I also received a few bits of information.

  • My friend Heather told me that New Orleans-style waterbugs fly at your face. AT YOUR FACE! Which, since my face is the face that is currently here, means that they will most certainly fly at my face which is not something I hope to experience. She told me to get the Raid in the silver can because it is full of chemicals and the shape of the nozzle allows for pretty good aim which means that you can, from a distance, spray that noxious shit and hopefully hit the attacking bug in mid (at my face) fly. That sounds like a really great idea until one remembers that time I accidentally maced myself in the face. I decided, as a result, to forego airborne chemical warfare and simply go for some traps.
  • My friend Rob told me that here in New Orleans they call these bugs “palmettos.” I am glad to know what they are called here so that when I tell people about The Bug and they think I am talking about silver fish (also ew!) I can use the appropriate regionalism to correct them so that we are all on the same disgusting, flying-at-my-face page.

Waterbugs, The Update: Following the initial sighting I was living if not a carefree life at least one seemingly free of waterbugs. That is until the day before yesterday! I walked into the kitchen to grab something when <BAM!> There it was! Sneaking around on the floor like the huge and disgusting flying hunk of roach that it is. Naturally, I screamed, ran into the bedroom and jumped onto the bed which clearly wouldn’t have helped me one bit if the bug had decided to fly at my face. Luckily for all involved it did not. I’m pretty sure it actually also screamed and retreated under the refrigerator. What to do?! I quickly mined my brain for information and remembered a story my friend Carrie had told me in which her basement apartment became ground zero of a short-lived waterbug infestation during a huge rainstorm and she lined the inside of her doors with duct tape. It worked! And so I snuck into the kitchen and, looking out for monsters (AKA waterbugs), I retrieved some gorilla duct tape – extra sticky! – and laid it out all around the refrigerator so that if the bug decided to try and sneak out it would get caught! Inhumane, I know, but it was the only way I would be able to sleep.

And then I waited. And slept. But also waited.

When I woke up in the morning I went into the kitchen to see if the bug had in fact gotten stuck. I discovered the most awful thing. Not only had the bug not gotten stuck, but it had used its brute strength to actually move the gorilla tape a good 3 inches away from the fridge and then somehow dislodge itself to live another day. It also left behind one leg on the tape. So gross.

In summation the waterbugs down here are like other fucking level. They are like terminators. Seriously if we could train waterbugs to do our bidding we could use them to fight wars. These fuckers are no joke. And this said by someone who now has a 5-legged waterbug wandering around her house, waiting for the next opportunity to fly at my face.

Clothing: I have lost all my pants. I was putting my clothes away yesterday and I can’t find them. I know I had them because I recently wore them but now they appear to be missing. Has anyone seen them?

Driving: But seriously, people cannot drive here. Or, well, they can’t drive in a different way from the ways in which people up North can’t drive. So here is the new thing I have noticed. You’ll be moving along at a steady clip with all of the other people except for the one guy who is driving 25mph above the speed limit and is, like everyone else, allergic to the use of blinkers. And then, as if from nowhere, there is the person driving 20 mph below the speed limit. I don’t think I have driven on a highway in Louisiana once without encountering this person. And he/she is always in the middle lane. ALWAYS. Which is an extra big problem here where the right lane oftentimes goes from lane to exit only lane and back again with basically no warning whatsoever. So it actually isn’t really a lane at all. But the slow person isn’t in the next lane over, oh no. The slow person is in the other middle lane. So this is what happens:

  • The right lane is oscillating between exit only lane, new cars merging in lane and regular right lane where slow drivers are supposed to live so they don’t bother the rest of us.
  • The middle right lane becomes this lane where no one really wants to be because you have to be aware of the constantly changing status of the right lane. That being said this would be the perfect lane for a slow driver because all the other drivers who are merging and exiting and generally confused by signage can easily move into the slow driver lane because the slow driver is, well, so slow.
  • The middle left lane is where the slow driver now lives for reasons that I am not entirely clear on. This messes up all the other lanes because now there is a serious slow-down in the middle left lane resulting in a lot of tailgating. People love to tailgate here.
  • The left lane is basically the only lane that operates under normal lane procedures from what I can tell. The slow driver generally doesn’t venture over there. Although there generally is someone in a mini-van using cruise control at exactly 8 miles over the speed limit which can be problematic.

The result of all of this is a complete and total free-for-all. Every lane is a passing lane. Every car is tailgating some other car which means that every car is simultaneously tailgating someone else while trying to lose its own tailgater. And then there is the asshole who drives like he/she is from New Jersey. You know the guy. Driving really fast, weaving in and out of traffic with no warning whatsoever, squeezing into teeny tiny spaces. This person is almost always in a busted up coup with tinted windows. This guy has watched Fast and Furious too many times. I don’t not like that guy.

Conclusion: That’s all I’ve got for right now. The New Year is fast approaching and everyone seems pretty pleased that 2016 is over since it gave us Tr*mp and pretty much killed everyone that we love. And I don’t want to be the bearer of bad news, but unless 2016 flexes its muscles yet again, we will be inaugurating Tr*mp on the 20th day of January. And then we are stuck with him for the next 4 years unless he gets impeached at which point we are stuck with Mike fucking Pence. So I am sorry to say that 2017 is not looking like it’s gonna be all that much better. But there will be more New Orleans diary entries so that’s something, right?

An Average Day.

17 Dec

WARNING:  I am just sort of typing.  Typing about my day.  Connecting it to past days.  This may or may not make any sense.  Whether or not it makes sense has nothing to do with the peach juice vodka thing I made.  No, but seriously.  I’m hardly even drinking it because it tastes bad.  Anyway, proceed with caution.

Hi guys.  So here I am.  Sitting at my desk drinking this weird concoction of vodka, peach “juice” (which is actually quite similar to baby food, a fact that makes me feel a little weird) and water.  Honestly, it’s not very good and I think I might dump it out.  I am having A Day.  You know the kind.  It’s one of those days where you like, reflect on your life and think about where you thought you would be at this point which is maybe living in some foreign land doing something great for humanity but instead your are sitting at a bright blue desk which is actually made out of an old door that you painted like 6 years ago, drinking vodka flavored baby food.  You’ve never had a day like that?  Even without the oddly viscous liquor?  Oh, okay then.  Carry on.

I, for one, am having one of those days.  I think it is due to the fact that I spent the better part of this sleety, snowy, cold Tuesday in front of my computer reading the 247 slides of a bar-required tips certification course.  It’s this thing where you learn how to not serve underage people and also how to cut people off.  Interestingly, a lot of the male “characters” depicted in the accompanying videos are a little bit rapey.  There is the rapey manager who tells the hostess that she “did the right thing” by informing him of a drunk couple seated in Sherry’s section and the rapey bartender who tells a drunken bar-goer who turns down the snack of cheese that he offered her because she thinks it is too fattening that she “probably doesn’t need to worry about that.” I don’t know.  Maybe you had to be there.  Or maybe the hours I spent reading about R. Kelly prior to the 247 slides impacted my thought processes.  Either way, it has been one of those days.

I decided to go to the gym, put my foot in my shoe, thought it was a dead roach but discovered it was instead an errant hair clip.  Crisis averted!  I have heard about people having dead roaches in their shoes and it is something I do not want to experience myself.  It makes me think of this one time, actually. So there was this one time where I was feeling really sick so I decided, in a moment of overwhelming logic, to go lay on the floor.  I think I thought that if I looked as pathetic as I felt then maybe I would start feeling better.  Anyway, as I lay there, left cheek resting on the cold wood, garbage can at the ready, I noticed this thing only inches from my nose.  What could it be?  It wasn’t moving.  It looked like maybe it had legs. But I couldn’t detect a head.  I called up to my boyfriend who was in the bed curious as to why I decided to lay on the floor, and in the most pathetic voice I could said,

“There is this thing here right by my face and I think it might be a huge dead roach.  Is it a roach?  Tell me it isn’t a roach.  I don’t think I could go on if I knew that I was lying inches from a dead roach.”

I sometimes get a little dramatic when I am feeling sick.

He came down, scooped it up and told me it was no such thing.  Maybe I should just get off the floor.  I did.  But the next day I looked in the garbage can and saw a decapitated roach halfway covered by a tissue.  I am so happy that he didn’t tell me while I was lying there because I think I actually might have died.

Anyway, my day.  As I was saying I decided to go to the gym.  I had started a text thread with my coworkers about the lack of diversity in our tips certification course and also all the rapey dudes.  The thread devolved into some sort of argument about Batman.  I know nothing about Batman.  I’m not girl who’s really into super heroes.  I got to the gym and ran on the treadmill for awhile and didn’t think about Batman once.  Or roaches.  The television in front of me was stuck on ESPN so I was trapped watching NFL highlights and imagining what my life would be like if I gave a shit about football.  I think it would be roughly the same only I would eat more nachos.  Come to think of it, that might just make it worthwhile.  I LOVE nachos.

Then I came home, took a shower, ate a giant bowl of taco salad and watched a few episodes of Weeds.  And now I am sitting here, writing the most pointless blog post ever and all the ice in my weird vodka flavored beverage situation has melted.  In case you were wondering, this dilution hasn’t made it taste any better.  Slightly less like baby food, though, so that’s good.

The Time I Slept on a Marble Slab in the Aiport and Lived to tell the Tale

10 Jul

So you guys.  The other day I had one of the most epic travel journeys of my entire traveling life.  Those of you who know me (which, at this point, is most of you because you are the only people who would happily put up with my sort of unfocused rambling) know that I do a fair bit of traveling. I have been a number of places.  I love leaving the country.  I love seeing how other people live their lives and having a context for all the international things I like to read about.  I also really like eating fruit so I tend to go to fruit-heavy places.  I am one of those people who does not think that papayas taste like vomit.  Anyway, one of the things about traveling is that you have to actually get to and from the places you are going which can be the most trying part of it all especially when you book flights ass-early in the morning.  Clearly, I always book my flights at the most inconvenient times possible because it makes them cheaper but it also means that I get sort of stressed out and occasionally have to sleep in airports.  Sleeping in airports is pretty much as shitty as it sounds.  So, here’s the story.

A little over a week ago I traveled to Merida, Mexico to visit a good friend of mine from graduate school.  My flight there left at 7am from JFK.  No problem, I had my favorite driving friend pick me up from my house at 4:30am and take me to the airport.  I took the direct flight and then waited in the airport for like two hours reading The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks and then I got on a bus for 4 hours and voila!  There was my friend and her friend, who is also now my friend (yay!), waiting in the bus station when I got there!  The way back was not nearly as neat and clean.

We had decided to travel a little bit the last weekend I was in town and ended up at this cute little town on the water called Mahahual.  It was fun and nice only the cash machines all had no money in them and a lot of the places didn’t accept credit cards.  It was slightly problematic but we made due.  We left super early on Sunday morning, the day before the flight, in order to drive up to Cancun and spend the day at Isla Mujeres which is slightly less touristy and bro-infested.  As a side note, we stopped at a gas station and although the original guy we asked said they accepted cards it turned out, once the gas had been pumped, that they actually did not.  Clearly, we had no cash other than American currency which they also didn’t accept.  In the end one of the dudes ended up climbing on top of an adjacent building to try and get service to run the card.  It worked and it was hilarious.  Made my day.

So, we drove up to Cancun, parked in a lot, and took a ferry across to Isla.  Keep in mind that at this point it was like, 1:30 and we had been traveling since like 7:30 am.  My flight was the next morning at 6:10am.  Obviously.  I figured I would take the last ferry off Isla at midnight, take a bus to the airport, get there around 1:30 and just wait till my flight.  Just to be sure I looked online.  At 8pm I discovered that there were no buses that left from the Centro to the airport after 10pm and a taxi from the ferry to the airport was going to cost me $70.  It was decided that I would take the previous ferry, at 9pm, grab a cab to the Centro, take a bus to the airport and then wait. I got to the airport at 10:30.  I wanted to die.  After eating some toast (nothing on the menu at the only open restaurant in the airport was meat-free) I found a nice little slab of marble to attempt to nap on.  At around 12:30 I put my bag on the floor, extracted a sweatshirt to pad my hip, and laid down, using my luggage as a pillow and hugging my purse like a teddy bear.  It was the coldest, hardest, florescent-lightiest piece of marble in the world.  I’m serious.  I set my alarm for 4:45am because there was NO WAY I was going to oversleep my flight but it was unnecessary, I didn’t sleep.  At 3:45 I grew tired of pretending to sleep, checked into my flight and went through security.  It was then that I discovered that the Cancun airport is infested with the biggest, grossest cockroaches I have ever seen outside of the Benares train station in India.  Those fuckers were the size of rats.  I thanked my lucky stars that I had not discovered them the previous night because then my bed of marble would have been entirely out of the question.  Finally I boarded my flight.  But that’s not all!

My first flight went from Cancun to Mexico City.  Then I transfered to another plane there and flew from Mexico City to Hermosillo.  The international wing of the Hermosillo Airport was the same as the domestic wing of the Hermosillo Airport and probably if I threw a rock as hard as I could I could make it land clear on the other side.  Of the entire airport.  A rock.  Me.  I do not have a good throwing arm.  Also, there was a Subway there and the entire teeny tiny airport smelled like Subway sandwiches which is really gross.  I ate Pretzel M&Ms for lunch.  I then boarded a new plane with the same flight number at Hermosillo to fly to my 4th and final airport of the day.  It was so small.  So bumpy.  Not my favorite ever plane by far.  Finally, 17 hours after leaving Isla Mujeres I had arrived in the Phoenix Airport.  But that wasn’t the end!  I still had to get to Tucson!  My friend was outside waiting to pick me up only the Phoenix Airport is roughly the size of my hometown and I got lost like 12 times.  But I persevered!  I made it outside and we headed back to her house.  But first….

We stopped at an Ostrich Farm where we fed ostriches and deer and donkeys! It turns out ostriches are scary.

The end.

Oh, wait, one more thing.  Tomorrow morning I have a flight out of Phoenix at, you guessed it, 6am.  Have a shuttle picking me up at 2:50am.  Stay tuned.