There’s no pictures in this post, because, trust me, you don’t want to see the horrors I saw.
Our apartment has a cockroach problem. Oh, they’re the little German roaches, so it’s not like I have four-inch monsters climbing my walls or anything. I’ve sprayed, put down diatomaceous earth, left bait traps, everything. They’re breeding under the dishwasher, and I can’t get to them. So I clean house as best as I can and leave it at that.
Anyway, the past month or so, we’ve had a lot of fruit flies around. I always have piles of fruit on my counter for the kids to snack on, so I figured that was the source. The thing is, the fruit is completely gone by the end of every week, so I couldn’t tell where, exactly, they were coming from.
Then there was the smell. I’d been battling this sewer-smell for weeks–I cleaned and cleaned and cleaned, and it never seemed to go away. I cleaned my trash can and scoured the fridge for stinky leftovers, and anything else I could think of. Nothing helped.
This morning, when I pulled the trash can out from under the sink to take the trash can out, there were a bunch of roach egg pods underneath it. “Aha!” I thought. “I can clean these up and remove most of the next generation in one fell swoop!”
I started pulling stuff out from under my sink in preparation for cleaning. Among the various odds and ends under there, I had a mop bucket that I use mainly for storing cleaners.
It had an inch of black water in it. In the water were piles of roach corpses, and hundreds of fruit fly larvae. Thousands. The source of the mysterious smell had at last been uncovered.
Down the toilet the water went. I scrubbed and swept and stomped survivors, and threw away just about everything.
By the end, I just wanted to throw up. Or scream and run away. I took the kids to the park and sat out in the clean fresh air for a long time.
But as I recovered, it was with a growing sense of satisfaction. The insect population in our apartment is going to drop dramatically for a while.
Also, I don’t know where that black water came from. Did my garbage disposal leak? I couldn’t get it to drip when I was under there cleaning. Either way, we have a problem I need to make sure gets fixed, pronto … I just have to figure out what in the world it is.