Friday, July 26, 2013

Termites for Dinner

Termites swarming at a gas station
Another interesting Nigerian food report from Abuja. A few weeks ago, these things were flying around. Smashing into lights and windows and finally, crawling in to my room!

Termite in my room!
 They aren't very big, but they have giant wings which gives the illusion of an enormous flying menace!
Termites swarming a construction warning light
Let's make a termite pie!

In fact, they are termites. They swarm at the beginning of the rainy season and their wings fall off soon after. People gather around bright lights to collect them in water and then fry them up and eat them!

 Eventually I worked up the nerve to actually try this delicacy, which Ogadinma assured me was very tasty. One got into our room and was flying around the light bulb. I filled our bathroom scooping bucket with water and tossed him in. I went outside and caught another that was lured by our balcony light.

Just as I was starting to think about frying them and putting them in my mouth and how the texture would be and what exactly they would taste like and whether or not this would be inhibited by the negative association I have between insects and food and whether or not I would like them and whether or not they would make me gag, there was a power outage and I couldn't attract any more. I looked down at the two outlines of wings and bodies paddling ripples in my purple bucket and felt kinda bad for them. I waited for the power to come back. I used my LED light to shine out into the night sky but all I saw were billions and billions of particles of dust. Rushing by and slowing down with my breath and changing directions and sparkling like stars. 

That was the last I saw of the termites. They haven't been around since. I guess I'll have to wait til next year. . .

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