Blog Schedule

I post on Monday with an occasional random blog thrown in for good measure. I do my best to answer all comments via email and visit around on the days I post.

Monday, August 23, 2010


Termites. In the islands they live in huge nests in trees. You can see one here.

These nests are usually in live, healthy trees. One might think, "OH NO!" But they don't harm the trees. Their mission is to eat dead wood and leaf material. I'm sure if there weren't any termites the tropics would be buried in plant debris. They have a second job as well. The small local parrots make their nests inside live, active termite nests.

I took this picture of a pair from some distance away and then blew it up so that's why it's fuzzy. But you get the idea. They are rather gregarious and noisy birds that like to fly around together in small flocks.

When it rains hard termites may suddenly grow wings and fly all over the place, landing and dropping their wings. Sweeping up the wings is difficult as they have that fly-away quality of not staying put. Usually though, the termites behave themselves and stay out in the yard doing their termite thing.

Here in the Texas Hill Country the termites are a bit more sinister. They are not out there in the open where you can see them. They make their nests and tunnels underground. They are sneaky and can chew their way through things long before you know they are there.

Recently we discovered we had termites in various places in our yard. Some are too darn close to the house for comfort. So we've gotten the perimeters of our home and out-buildings professionally treated. It was quite the deal and not all that cheap.

However, safeguarding our abode is a priority, particularly since we both agree we would like to be here at least another 20 years.

Dealing with these termites got me thinking about things that chew on us and prevent us from doing what we want or keep us from writing.

Are your personal termites external or internal? Can you see them and know where they are or are they invisible to your inner eye? Are they chewing up useless dead wood? Or are they, unbeknownst to you, devouring a precious piece of internal furniture?

Better check.


  1. I don't know about my personal termites but that's a pretty cool view - what gorgeous birds!

  2. cool post! That picture of the termite nest gave me the heebie-jeebies. Yikes!

    My personal termites are inner and outer. I have some health issues that zap my energy level to the point that it can be debilitating, frustrating and leaves me with many battles both emotionally and physically.

    In writing, my termites are the nagging thoughts that all this work I'm doing will never be published. I love writing so I keep doing it, but my self esteem keeps gnawing on my positive can-do-attitude.

    great post! :0)

  3. I didn't realize termites ate just the dead wood.
    Good idea to have your house treated!!!
    My husband is looking for a better job that may take us to another state, so the question mark of my future is gnawing away at me right now.

  4. Nicole, They are the clowns of the air along with being pretty.

    I have the same kind of writing termites, Christy. Despite having been published (though not a book) I still have those gnawing doubts about whether I'm any good.

    Kelly, I'm sending good thoughts your way that your husband finds a good job in a place you both LOVE!

  5. At first that link was pretty nasty, but thinking of the termites and the parrots having a symbiotic relationship is pretty cool.

  6. Yikes... just the thought of termites makes me cringe... especially when you say internal. You've given me the heebie jeebies!

  7. Awesome question. I love your metaphor.

    Mine are a little bit of both. External things, like money issues, unfortunately become internal issues. Ugh.

  8. Great post...I love questions that make you ponder a termites are internal...I listen too often to the voices in my head, I worry about the butterflies in my stomach and I keep things inside until it rains and my termites grow wings fly...sigh...

  9. What a great analogy! I was getting a wee bit creeped out by the thought of termites, but then you turned it into a writing thing. Good job.

    My termites are external, but since they're also family I dare not try to exterminate them! hahaha

  10. Termites. *shudder*

    My termites are definitely internal. They can burrow around for hours, usually at night.

  11. Those are really interesting facts about Termites (and the birds) in the islands. The nest in the picture is enormous!

    I love your analogy about personal/internal termites. I can definitely relate... a personal termite of mine is the internet. It chews up time during the day that should be more productive.


Your Random Thoughts are most welcome!