We have something new in our 'creepy-crawly' zoo.
Warning: disgusting information to follow…. For those with delicate sensibilities, page down to the recipe.
Last week I noticed a strange odor above our bed. Not to put too fine a point on it, I could smell a dead animal.
I questioned mon mari.
Yes, it seems he had, in fact, managed to get some poison tucked above the ceiling boards.
Apparently it worked.
Something was dead.
On the positive side, there were no more scurrying visitors scratching above the ceiling in the pre-dawn hours.
I figured the odor would dissipate in a few days and didn't think about it further.
Apparently my nose wasn't the only one that detected the smell.
A few days ago, when I took the laundry up to fold, I noticed a white 'worm' crawling on the bed.
I'd seen one or two before in the bedroom, and I just assumed it was something leftover in the beams that had woken up and dropped down or something leftover in the floor that had managed to climb through the new floorboards.
But I'd always seen them on the floor – never on the bed.
I 'allowed' it to inch it's way on to a tissue and flushed the little bugger.
It was kind of creepy.
Last night I saw another one….
When I came back with the tissue to assist it to new climes I saw another one.
At this point I did the only logical thing open to me – screamed for mon mari.
Having just watched a typically gruesome episode of 'Bones' I realized that I was not looking at little worms, but at maggots.
That thought did not calm me in the least.
I was not pleased to have maggots crawling on my bed.
While waiting for mon mari I picked up the decorator pillows.
I rapidly went from merely 'not pleased' to contemplating bull-dozing the house and moving to a brand-new, squeaky clean, apartment.
Mon mari looked at them, scooped them up, and said he'd noticed a few earlier (and disposed of them, as well).
Somehow, those thoughts did not put me in a relaxed mode for sleeping.
A glass of wine helped.
The second helped even more.
I have checked often today, and not found anymore.
One should be able to walk into one's bedroom, confident that it's a safe, comfortable and comforting area.
I carefully open the door, check the walls and ceiling for spiders and centipedes.
If I open a window, I do it carefully to avoid having lizards fall on my head.
And now, the icing on the cake…. Now I carefully check the bed for maggots.
I assume, if we are diligent in removing the ones we see (and the flies resulting from the ones we don't see), once the dead animal is gone, the maggots will be gone also.
This is my world.
Thank God we eat well!
Stir-Fried Turkey with Chard and Butternut Squash
10oz (300gr) turkey cutlets or tenderloin
2 cloves garlic
6oz (180gr) chard
8oz (250gr) butternut squash
1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp powdered ginger
1 tsp sesame oil
2 tsp tbs olive oil
1 tsp soy sauce
1/2 cup chicken stock
1 tbs cornstarch (Maizena) dissolved in 2 tbs water
Thinly slice onion. Mince garlic. Roughly chop chard stems; slice leaves into strips. Cut squash into large chunks. Cut turkey into strips – bite-size.
Heat olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Add cumin, ginger, garlic, chard stems and stir-fry another 2 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.
Add sesame oil, soy sauce to pan and heat. Add turkey and stir-fry 3 – 5 minutes, until golden. Remove and put with onions.
Add squash to skillet and stir-fry 5 minutes. Return turkey and vegetables to pan. Add chicken stock, and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes, or until squash is tender. Add chard leaves and cover until they wilt. Stir to combine, add cornstarch mixture and stir until thickened. Serve over Basmati rice, adding more soy sauce if desired, according to taste.
In case you didn't notice – we are still eating from the garden – the stuff that survived, anyway….