When Diane and I travel, we always leave a night-light with a timer on in the living room that faces the street to avoid a deserted house look. Thankfully, it’s always worked and we’ve never had any burglary issues. Unfortunately, someone forgot to explain the night light’s meaning to the ants. Returning back from a two-week Canadian jaunt, our last holiday season in the cold before the upcoming move to Malaysia, we walked into the house and came face to face with a superhighway of little ants. Appearing to start in somewhere in the kitchen heating vent, they formed an amazingly perfect commuter highway leading past the kitchen, across the hallway, into the living room and culminating at another heating vent large enough to support a colony of unknown proportions.
Last weekend, while still in Calgary, we checked the Yahoo weather forecast while huddled up in a cozy warm Canadian house, and chuckled at the “frost warnings” issued for Northern California while the weather outside hovered at -25 C (about five below zero for the Metric challenged). The Bay Area usually gets a week of near freezing overnight temperatures and if you think they bundle up when it’s only cool, you should see them when it’s near freezing. Unfortunately, cold snaps also push the threshold for a comfortably warm ant colony. Once it’s too cold, ants seek shelter anywhere warm and when the scouter ants discover an unoccupied house, they move all their little belongings into said warm spot.