Chelsea's House of Horrors

Sunday, October 28, 2007
Posted by chelsea

Attempting to move forward in my life as an independent and capable young woman in Greece, I moved out of The Artemis on Monday, to what I hoped would be my new home for the next few months. Sadly though, my new accommodations were far better suited to be used as the setting for a horror movie.

The bottom floor of an unused three-story house on a dark street in Porto Rafti, the studio apartment is what could only be described as a "fixer-upper." With wood flooring that was rotting out in places, a hole in the bathroom where a window should have been and corners covered in wasp nests and spiderwebs, I had to make a huge effort to convince myself that it could be transformed into livable quarters.

I began last Thursday by spraying every nook and cranny with bug spray and letting it sit for the night, hoping the countless spiders I had seen would vacate before the next day. Friday, I swept the cobwebs and mouse pellets out the front door and followed with the mop. After the four hours that took, things didn't look much better, so on Sunday I steamed the walls, corners, furniture, floors, ceiling...everything, in hopes that it would somehow transform into my own cozy little house.

Cozy definitely wasn't going to be a word used to describe this place, but just as I had started to actually believe it would be livable, I was graced with the most horrifying creature crawling at breakneck speed toward me. It was a centipede*, it was at least 6 inches long, and it seemed to be coming at me with intentions to kill.

Jumping on the bed, I aimed the steamer I had been using (which was, sadly, the only accessible weapon) and pulled the trigger. A narrow line of steam shot out of the wand and did absolutely nothing more than increase the velocity at which the centipede pursued me. With a warrior-like scream and a desperate will to live, I leapt off the bed, grabbed the broom and swept the little monster outside. Knowing it'd only return for another fight, I took to throwing bricks at it from a pile of rubbish nearby and didn't let up until I was certain that it had perished.

After that deathly encounter, I was a bit nervous about making the move, but did so on Monday night. After putting sheets on my small metal cot (I was convinced the bugs could easily crawl up the wooden bed), I set towards the bathroom to brush my teeth before settling in for my first night in the house of horrors. As I reached up and turned on the bathroom light, I was startled by the sight of a centipede identical to the one I thought I had killed the day before, poised and ready to attack.

Screaming, I retrieved the broom and went about sweeping the armored car of a bug out the doorway and into the garden, this time sparing the brick-throwing scene from the previous day for a simple slamming of the front door and a ceremonious-like sprinkling of poisonous powder around my bed.

Needless to say, I barely slept a wink, and the few hours I did manage to slip off into dreamland were filled with nightmares of giant centipedes killing me in various scenarios, all of which took place in my lovely new home.

After my first night there, I felt I had overcome a huge milestone and it would all be downhill from there, but the centipedes had set the mood and the following three nights were no different.

Friday I made the mistake of coming to see everyone at The Artemis and was told how much they all missed having me around. After recounting the tails of my new quarters, the Myhans seemed just as horrified as me, and with little more than a suggestion from them and not a moment of deliberation, I had not only agreed to move back to The Artemis, but I didn't even bother returning to the haunted house for my belongings until the next day.

I'm now nursing a fist-sized spider bite on my leg as proof of the nightmarish creatures that lurked in the horror house. I'm certain a few more nights in the creaky old place would have resulted in an all-out war between me and the critters, most likely ending in favor of the critters.

The HUG students are now inquiring about the use of my house for a Halloween party.

* I pulled this off of Wikipedia....

"Centipedes are fast-moving, venomous, predatory, terrestial arthropods that have long bodies and many jointed legs. Some species are highly venomous and often produce very painful bites, but only one human death has ever been recorded..."

...I bet I would've been the second if that thing had gotten to me.


Danny B said...

Centipedes are ridiculous

They're not too big here in the states, but get pretty freakin' huge outside of the USA.

So where are you headed now? Or do you plan on staying at the Artemis?

Anonymous said...

So... I have been falling behind on reading your blog because, once again, I am a horrible friend. I keep forgetting and only checking your LJ instead. Well, now I'm really behind on stories and I realized that I have no idea what is going on now. You're living in a house of horrors? How did this come about? You need to be in Shepherdstown, WV in a cozy bug-free living space. I think it would do you some good. But boy, you're a trooper. You deserve a thousand cups of tea and a thousand hugs.