Because you can't have depths without surfaces.
Linda Grant, thinking about clothes, books and other matters.

Friday, 2 May 2008

The root of all evil is

. . . a cupboard at the top of the stairs containing an old rug, which has formed a sort of moth Waitrose, aisles and aisles of delicious things to eat. I now have to clean out the whole thing. The floor is covered with larvae.

On the plus side, they don't seem to have got into the wardrobe. I hope.

UPDATE
Having had the most disgusting morning putting half-eaten stuff and other stuff covered in larvae into bin bags, and having found a half-eaten vintage coat from the early 50s which a friend gave me in 1985, my cleaner has arrived and is going over the carpet inch by inch with a vacuum cleaner, crevice tool and insecticide. Next week the carpet cleaners are coming.

I have to go to the gym now and have my trainer make me pick up heavy things. Lovely. Then home to find out if this is the new mayor of London, as predicted by all the news media.

UPDATE UPDATE
After I spent four hours this morning clearing out the cupboard, spraying moth killer and laying down insecticide, and my cleaner spent five hours vacuuming, this evening the moths are still there, on the walls and ceiling in the hall.

I have had an email . . .

Greetings --

just a quick note of commiseration! it's a testament to the laxity of my cleaner that oh, god, nearly a year ago last november, i noticed some bald patches in a rug I'd bought at John Lewis (normally very reliable in all things) and when i turned it over, it was teeming with larvae and suchlike. it took me ages and ages to get rid of the damn things, using some of the same products I see you've got. unlike you, i'm not smart enough to store woolens in bags so ended up tossing a few things, though nothing quite as mind boggling as the rug itself! i'm not at all squeamish about bugs (rodents are another story) but I was grossed out. moths are so persistent, too.
and just when I thought it was safe, I saw one flying round the room the other night. Luckily, so far, seems to be a solo flight. But the shorter version is just to say perservere and I feel for you!

12 comments:

Toby Wollin said...

As bad as the stuff you can see can be...it's the stuff that is hidden that is inevitably much worse.

Anonymous said...

the lair of the beast... Perseus and minotaur...

materfamilias said...

oh dear, oh dear, oh dear . . . this is what we all fear, isn't it? the silent horrors of all those dark, unspringcleaned corners. This is probably why our mothers swore by those annual purgations.

Toby Wollin said...

materfamilias - one of the problematic results of just having too much stuff. All sorts of uglies breed in the dark.

greying pixie said...

Gandhi said 'never own more than you can carry'. Now we know why!

StyleSpy said...

Ohhhhhhh, I've got the willies just thinking about it (and about all my own cashmere sweaters, folded peacefully in their drawers and waiting to be made into moth meals). So sorry about all your moth-y troubles. But how on earth to avoid it, short of walking around in a choking camphorous cloud? Because when I've used actual moth balls, it has taken days and weeks of airing to minimize the odor and I still smelled like a fusty old Welsh geography professor. And lavender sachets? The moths are not afraid of lavender. The moths laugh at lavender.

dana said...

I'm so sorry.

WendyB said...

Blech!

miss cavendish said...

Disappointed to learn in comments that lavender doesn't work. I have cedar throughout my closet--tucked between sweaters, hanging on hangers--and that seems to be working.

phyllis said...

Two summers ago both of my twin daughters had head lice at the same time. The cure felt very simliar to what what you're going through Linda.

I feel for you girlfriend.

roz said...

I have some knitting wool stored with Yardley's lavender soap. I understand real lavender is not strong enough to scare them but that fake Yardley's smell is something they can't abide.

I am told moths/larvae are attracted to body oils so sweaters must be cleaned and unworn before stored... I wash my cashmere in a bowl of warm water and a drop of dish detergent.

Rollergirl said...

Oh dear. We have moths, at the moment only one or two a week but it's not the moths but the eggs you need to worry about. (You've got to find them first, then destroy every last trace of them.) I clipped a couple of articles on moth-riddance a while ago but when I re-read them, oh boy, it's just such a big to-do! I think we're doomed :(