Everyone out of the pool (or house, in this case)

tomato hornworm

If I’d seen a tomato hornworm, all calm-face bets are off.

I use the hostile outdoors as my excuse for wanting to garden inside – it works when you live where very little grows spontaneously except sagebrush and inch-high flowering “weeds.” I also blame my heart medications, several of which say “avoid sunlight” in their warning.

But the biggest reason I am gardening indoors is that I’m not a fan of bugs.

I don’t run and scream anymore. I used to run and think about screaming. I’d go find the closest heaviest, flattest object to throw at them, or trap them under a coffee can and await rescue (me, not it).

Now, after 50-odd years in the desert, I don’t panic, scream, run or hide. I am calm and collected as I move away from the basking snake or crocheting spider, and lizards are actually rather amusing to the cats.. So I’m a cool customer around many living things that used to freak me out.

Unless they’re in. my. house.

Then all bets are off. The reason we have 1800 square feet surrounded by walls and a roof and double-paned windows is to keep our stuff in, and keep bugs out. “Bugs” means anything that can walk, crawl, fly, web or otherwise move, and is not bigger than our cats.

So when I discovered I had to navigate a crowd of gnats to get from kitchen to living room to watch 60 Minutes and munch on dinner, it was everybody out. Tomatoes and cauliflower showing any sign of bugs on leaves – out Out OUT.

Last I looked out, the wind was still kicking along at about 500 mph. The bugs are probably long gone by now. Maybe a few plants will leave also.  I wish them well.