Trudy Andrew | Canadian Author

Tails From the Farm

What Bugs Me

There’s nothing like an extra busy day, to make time fly. Fixing fences on the farm, is like filling potholes in a road, a neverending task. Between projects in the yard, regular, boring housework and the pleasure of working with the horses, there are also many other things that crop up to make a day interesting, like helping the girlchild to save a nest of baby robins. Between all of that, there are meals to plan and construct. Before you know it, the day is done.
I’m not a fan of bugs, spiders creep me out, and I shudder if a beetle crawls onto me, or worse, if it flies and lands on me. I like butterflies and some moths, but have no patience for mosquitoes, horseflies or any other bug that bites critters and humans. Of course I like bees, as without them, humans would starve to death, but most bugs? Well, I’m just not a fan.
We plant a large garden where we grow organic veggies for ourselves, as well as a couple of rows of carrots to share with the horses. We don’t count on the carrots to last very far into the fall, but we do like to have a few bags of spuds to last through the winter.
It’s hot, it’s summer, and nothing’s better on a hot day than cold, potato salad. Now, my husband has this weird aversion to digging up the spuds from our garden, before he deems them ready. I, on the other hand, want to get in there as soon as possible. Why buy, when there are fresh spuds for the taking, in our very own back yard? Yesterday was a perfect, potato salad day. I had all the ingredients, mayo with olive oil, free range eggs, onion, and granny apples. All I needed was spuds. Conceding to the hubby’s quirky idea that ours needed to keep growing, I actually went to town to buy some. Problem was, when I stood there looking at the prices, I just couldn’t do it. I was not about to pay a ridiculous price, for something I could dig up a at home.
With everyone gone doing whatever, there was nobody around to oppose my decision to get digging. I full intended to dig up a couple of gallon buckets worth of spuds, and I was going to make a huge batch of potato salad.
It’s been a tough garden year. Some veggies didn’t come up, and the hordes of insects trying to eat our veggies before we could, is simply atrocious. For the first time, we had to resort to an organically friendly, potato bug powder, as the rotten, little beggers are ridiculous prevalent this year. As I mentioned, I don’t like bugs, but a girl’s gotta do, what a girl’s gotta do. Nobody was going to dig up the spuds for me, and I really wanted to make that potato salad.
Tentatively scanning the plants for the familiar, orange beetles, I was relieved that there didn’t seem to be any on the plants that had been stripped bare of leaves. Despite the fact there was a liberal dusting of powder on all the potato plants, the bugs ferocious appetites hadn’t been curbed at all. In fact, I’m pretty sure the natural powder was actually a lovely, ever so tasty coating for them. It didn’t seem to make any difference at all. Poor plants continued to be turned into nothing but stalks. Anyway, I was pretty sure, I would be able to carefully pull out the bare sticks, without touching a bug.
It worked pretty well. In no time at all, I had one pail full of perfect, little spuds, and was well into the next, without a bug bothering me. As I sifted through the loose soil, looking for spuds, I felt something on my foot. Glancing down, I saw a potato bug crawling into my runner! Then horror of horrors, I realized there were more, way more, and they were all over my runners. Never mind that, they were swiftly crawling up my ankles and legs. The dang things were coming out of the soil like something out of a Hitchcock movie!
Well … I can train and manage any size of horse, as well as train dogs, cats and kids. Though I put out my best effort, and stubbornly persist to do so, I don’t claim to be able to train husbands, because as everyone knows, it’s easier to herd cats than train a man, but bugs? No way. I’m not proud of this, but I lost it. With a shriek that sounded more like a squeak, I was out of there. Stamping my feet as I frantically ran, shedding bugs as I went. Thank goodness nobody witnessed it, as I’m sure I looked quite the lunatic.
It is what it is. I’m a grown woman, and I don’t like bugs. I predict nightmares for a few nights.

Leave a Reply

About Trudy Andrew

Trudy Andrew lives on a small farm just east of Winnipeg, Manitoba, where she enjoys her Morgan horses. A dreamer since she was a child, its no surprise to those who know her well that her imagination would find an outlet in writing, as it has in the past through artwork.
All rights reserved. No part of this website or book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means – graphic, electronic or mechanical – without the prior written permission of the author.


 Oakbank, MB