In the space between summer and the full onset of autumn we have been invaded by flies. It’s our own fault. We’ve had such a wonderful, long, hot summer that we’ve been slow to close the windows when inside is warmer than out, and as a consequence we now have uninvited guests. Musca domestica. The common house fly.  Everything from the rolled up newspaper to the fancy battery operated tennis racquet is completely outclassed by these flies. They’re like that kid in the class that’s always fooling around and never fails a test. And believe me, I’ve set them lots and lots of tests.  Raid is like ketamine to these boys. They inhale, relax and just when you think you’ve won, they start that low flying circle – around the front of the TV, over the back of the couch and down the human body – for a quick touch-and-go landing on the foot, the arm, the face – then it’s onto the light fitting in the centre of the room, and back round again. And again. I bought the heavy duty, self-spraying toxic chemical that leaves bodies on the floor. We set it opposite the door- which obviously the flies use more than we do. A week later, I’m sweeping up corpses belonging to every insect known to man and the flies are still landing on the edge of the butter dish. Nope. Make that in the butter dish.  I move the lethal chemical concoction down from the wall in the hallway and onto the window ledge in the kitchen so it will spray directly into the flight path. I choose a time where food is not going to be affected and I switch it on. As I leave the house, my last view of it is of a fly crawling over the nozzle that dispenses the spray.  Those same two slow, rage- inducing flies are now squeezing through the crack in my office door because it’s almost midnight and it’s no fun flying around the lounge in the dark. “Go into the bedroom where the man is snoring,” I shout. “Crawl up his nostril and see if you can fly out his mouth!” But they won’t will they? You and I both know that when they eventually decide to go into the bedroom, it will be when I can’t keep my eyes open any longer and they’ve worked out it’s time for a few night circuits – around the top of the bed, over the pillows, and across the face of the woman who is just drifting off to sleep…







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