It was the usual morning habits. Open the curtains, fill the water heater, open the blinds and check the temps outside. There is still some seed in the feeder. As I put the sugar jar away, I consider having some pecan rolls for breakfast. They were always a family favorite this time of year. As I ball up the little pink paper package, I step on the trashcan lid release and to my surprise there is a roach in the trash bag.
I quickly close the lid and then wonder how did that roach get in there? I’ve lived in this house for over 30 years and have never seen a roach.
I shake my head and unwrap some pecan rolls. I put the plate in the microwave and hesitantly go to throw away the cellophane wrappers. I slowly step on the pedal and the lid pops open.
The roach scurries around the top of the trash bag and I slap the lid shut.
I’m not scared of roaches. I know the crunch of the bugs when I lived in apartments, but I had never seen a roach in this house. Perhaps the cats got them or the raccoons. Had plenty of crickets and spiders, but no roaches.
And this is no ordinary roach. It is one of those Kafka roaches. The thing is huge. And however it got into a closed trashcan, I worry he can also get out. And they’re maybe more of them.
As I take the plate out of the microwave burning my fingers, I fold a paper towel to protect my fingers, grab my cup of coffee and gingerly walk pass the trashcan. I stop to listen. A bug that big should be making some noise roaming around in there.
I follow my normal routine all the time looking around on the floor. I have no desire to suddenly hear their hissing. I do not want to grab for the mouse only to find it to be a creepy brown bug. I sure don’t want one to fly at me.
After my sugar breakfast and a couple of cups of coffee, I decide to face the new guest in the house. Putting the plate into the sink full of dishes soaking in water that will be cleaned sooner or later and putting my cup back into its usual spot for tomorrows use, I gallantly walk over to the trashcan.
“OK bud! It’s you and me!”
I lift the lid and wait. There doesn’t seem to be any movement. I’m prepared to jump back if my unwanted friend decides to attach me but there is no indication that he was ever there. I stare at the empty soup cans and torn up junk mail expecting some sign that I had not hallucinated this creature.
As I stood there looking at my waste, waiting for some evidence of my invasive friend, I noticed the white trash bag handles against the black trashcan. The gap in the loops were the same size and shape as this mysterious creature I was so sure I had seen in the early morning light.
Well perhaps I saw what I saw and perhaps he got away. Then again perhaps he was never there in the first place.
Sometimes we see things that never existed and can never prove they were ever there. Things don’t always appear as they seem.