Fiendish Thingies

Just a few Fiendish ThingiesMarch 9th, 2007



Dear Mum,

I mentioned in my previous letter that Cyprus has a zero tolerance policy towards drugs. Well the few square metres of Cyprus which I occupy has a zero tolerance policy towards Fiendish Thingies! Specifically, anything that bites or stings! Mosquitos, gnats, midges  –  you name it  –  all FTs receive the death penalty and are summarily executed without trial. No fleas for clemency are ever entertained.

Hi! I'm your worst nightmare! Mr Mosquito. Cute, ain't I?

There are one or two exceptions of course. Butterflies, ladybirds and bees (not wasps though) will always be welcome, but I don’t regard them as fiendish. I’m sure there must be others, but none spring to mind immediately.

Some may think this unyielding policy rather harsh. But I’ve had to introduce it because during my first week in Cyprus, back in October, I received about 200 mosquito bites on my arms and torso. Very nasty bites they were too. And very unsightly! It looked like I had some sort of incurable disease. The bites took several weeks to go down and irritated like mad.

I couldn’t work out where I was getting them from. Every day, a lot more bites would appear. Eventually I deduced that it must be happening while I was asleep. So I emptied a can of insect killer into my bedroom, and when I came back in the evening I found three dead mosquitoes on the floor, plus a few innocent bystanders who got caught in the crossfire.

The biting stopped after that. But even now, five months later, you can still see the marks.

Hello! I'm a Biting Midge. Not as nasty as Mr Mosquito, but I'm working on it!There’s another type of Fiendish Thingy that has recently taken to biting me while I’m asleep. Unlike the mosquito bites though, these only last 24 hours and are a very minor irritant. Nevertheless, the strict No FT policy applies equally to them. I haven’t managed to identify the culprits’ species yet, but I know what they look like and I send out patrols around the apartment several times a day to hunt them down, using spray-first-and-ask-questions-later tactics!

The only time that there’s a temporary stay of execution is when they’re in the food preparation area. Can’t spray them there! A moratorium is imposed until they return to the battlefield. They’re cunning little bastards though. They tend to use guerilla tactics and pounce on you when you least expect it.

But as far as I’m concerned, there can be no mitigating circumstances. “Sorry Guv, I thought you were someone else” is no excuse! If it bites, it bites the dust!

Hey there! How you doin'? I too am a mosquito. You'll never win! There are too many of us!It’s the only way! These little bugs have to bugger off. They need to be shown who’s boss. And I’m hoping that word will spread amonst the Larnaca Fiendish Thingy community that this is definitely a no-fly zone. Yes!  –  even flies are shot down. I can’t take the chance that Cypriot flies have evolved a superior attack mechanism to UK flies.

So to any Fiendish Thingies reading this letter  –  YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!


– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

A note to whoever’s job it was to give all the insects names:

Couldn’t you have done better than ‘Fly’? It’s a bit simplistic! It’s like calling a human being a ‘Walk’, or calling a fish a ‘Swim’.

Maybe it was the end of a hard day and he’d lost enthusiasm for the job.

Well done for ‘Daddy-Long-Legs’ though. I’ve always liked that one!

ps do tell us what Katy did to you? I’ve often wondered!


©MPB 09/March/2007


One Response to Fiendish Thingies

  1. Liz says:

    Just wanted to say how much we enjoy your letters from larnaca – you have
    a fascinating way of perceiving things and of putting them together with a
    fantastic writing/composition ability – in fact I would go so far as to say
    – talent. You really are very good ….

    I love the flippant thoughts about a fly being a fly too – I never think to
    think about these things – and now everytime I see a fly, far from wanting
    to swat it, it makes me smile instead !!

    Anyway, better go – I’ve got a Walk sitting next to me who wants his

    Lots of love
    E xxx

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