Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Bed lice! but what are they doing in a Bus?

The Past
Mosquitoes bite me, snakes give me the horrors and pests in general pester me a lot. But I reserve my hatred for the bed lice as my principal enemy no: 1.

To escape from mosquitoes, I do not use any repellants. I just go to Melvin’s (my friend)side. Mosquitoes and him, they have a special bond. With his 110kg 6ft2 inch body and gulf blood, they idolize him over any skinny country fellows nearby.

To escape from the occasional snake that comes my way, I run as fast as my legs can carry me.

But I am to bed lice what mosquitoes are to Melvin. They just seek me out. They bleed me dry and if I am in a 10 kilometer radius, rest is assured, you are safe from bed lice attacks! I got familiar with them since the day they bit me when I must have been all of 5 years old. It was when I was watching a Mohanlal (famous Malayalam actor) flick. While the great man was delivering his blood curdling dialogues in a B-class palm thatched theatre, I was delivering my blood to that most abominable of God's creations.

However it was not till I came searching for a job in Bangalore that these guys started giving me hell. The room that we had rented had them by the thousands. The going was so bad that at times I used to sleep in the morning in sunlight (they can’t stand sunlight) instead of at night. Other tactics included pulling two chairs together and sleeping on them. But even the chairs provided very little protection after about half an hour. By which time the whole lice populace would have smelled me out.

All the available "high-end" technology can do nothing to exterminate these guys, you spray them, you squash them, you burn them… nothing helps. They just keep coming back. Pests are the best biological systems invented by Mother Nature I guess. They can endure ANYTHING and come out biting.

Once we got jobs, we shifted our place of stay to better locales. The lice did some piggybacking and arrived alongside. But through some judicious "sunning of our bedding" and burning of our valuable books infested with their eggs we were able to wage successful war on them. Of course you can’t win, but then they are now nothing more than a minor nuisance.

The Present
Thus I was relishing a lice free life once again when I decided to go home for a short stint. I had to attend some "tie-the-knot" ceremonies that my cousins are so rampantly up to these days. As I sat in the bus (Kallada travels), I felt that very familiar itch on my right arm. I caught the culprit and squashed him. Next I felt an itch in my back, this time however the perpetrator escaped into the cushions before the squashing ceremony. I was seriously un-nerved. This was just the beginning, that whole journey was one biting fiasco. I remember being awake till about 4 A.M in the morning. I must have slept off after that due to utter exhaustion. I thought that this was a one off experience that would not repeat. Yeah, people tell me that I have case of "clinical optimism". These days, while traveling between Bangalore and Kerala, I, the pseudo atheist and religion hater chant out incantations to all possible pests-related-Gods to save me from these guys.

But ever since the flick "the Gods must be crazy" I guess all's not so well in up-up land and rarely are my prayers answered. I read numerous blogs on pest related violence in Kerala-Bangalore buses. There was one pathetic one about a mother who had to sit up for the whole night in a sleeper bus and kill them so that they wouldn’t bite her 1-year old. If the reader has a grudge against someone, don’t go about hiring “Goondas” to beat him up. Just buy him a ticket to Bangalore. You get your revenge, cheap and sure, no goof ups involved.

The future
I was watching "Blade" an exceptionally dumb special affects crammed English flick about vampires and other God forsaken creatures. I was about to doze off, when the lead makes this stupendous revelation. He is a vampire who is sunlight resistant. This proves that the Gods are not as crazy as some Hollywood script writers! I really hope that the lice don't become sunlight resistant!

Right now I am in the mood to become a Zoroastrian. Sun rules!!!!

1 comment:

TESSIE said...

about "Bed lice! but what are they doing in a Bus?"... kallada seems to be breeding them...
NOW A DAYS KALLADa TRAVELS is providing more facilities to make ur journey a better naightmarish experience... :(