InÂ London, they say that wherever you stand you are never very far away from a rat. Apparently the whole city is crawling with them. They are there, you just can’t see them. Well inÂ Sydney, it would seem that wherever you stand, you are never very far away from a huntsman spider and ten thousand cockroaches.
Since returning toÂ SydneyÂ after ten years in rat-infestedÂ London, my love affair with a poorly-remembered and romantically-reconstructed Australian wildlife is well and truly over. When our sulphur-crestedÂ cockatoos are not eating the solar heating tubes on our roof, they are in cahoots with the local colony of possums. Despite several attempts at blocking the holes in our roof and evicting the possums, theÂ cockatoos and the possums are working together to peck, bite and gnaw new entry points. I’m all for the symbiotic nature of ecosystems and I’m all for team work, but this is ridiculous. In theÂ mornings, after changing multiple babiesâ€™ nappies, I also have to wipe down the possum wee stains from our walls. Joy.
Then there are the cockroaches. No one told me the city had been overtaken by cockroaches. Big, small, flying and scuttling. Why are there so manyÂ god damnÂ cockroaches inSydney? Have they mutated and developed a resistance to all known cockroach-killing chemicals as well as nuclear war? And just when I thought I was coming to terms with the cockroaches (as well as developing lighting-fast reflexes with a bottle of Raid), our annual pestÂ inspection by Rentokil revealed that we have termites.
Yes, termites. More on that later. I have to go kill a cockroach with my bare hands. I am hardcore like that.
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