Seattle, January 4
It's been years since I was awake in the dark and worried about something under the bed.
What's worse is what's behind it.
But I just woke up in the Seattle hotel room at 4: 07 a. m. Pacific time.
Now, I can't stop thinking about the personal things that bug scientists have told me about their adventures in a hotel room.
I did check out at this hotel in Seattle, and I learned this a few weeks ago at the American Academy of insects annual meeting.
Anyone who encounters bugs in a hotel or residence in the US or Canada can post an infection notice on the website.
I can prove that this site is attractive for anyone planning a trip.
When I checked out of Seattle, it didn't seem to mention a lot of hotels considering how many trips there were.
The trouble is that the registry is only as good as the person who bothered to post it.
I try not to think about these omissions now.
The rest of the insect sessions are constantly echoing in my mind.
A few decades later, bugs reappeared in North America.
The hotel is infected again and the suitcase carries a ride to more hotels-
Not only cheap, but also broken
In that place.
So, I started asking how bed bug scientists live in hotels. Andrea Polanco-
Pinzon at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg told me that her graduate advisor checked the lab member's hotel room for bugs before settling people down and opening the package.
If I wanted to hear a bug scientist find something nasty in his room, she urged me to go to Michael Porter at Lexington University of Kentucky.
Potter told the story at the end of his speech, showing an enlarged photo of a dusty wooden surface with abandoned bedbug skins and his search for the current hotel room
He said he had bed bugs in his room during two meetings of the last three annual meetings of the insect society.
During his active questioning following his conversation with several other bugs, someone raised the question that I suspect all of us are thinking about: when Potter and other bug scientists went out to look for reptiles, potter answered the question gracefully and said he was very careful.
One of the easiest mistakes, he warns, is that when leaving an infected site, forget to look for a ride bug at the bottom of the shoe.
When he got home, he also said, "you make your clothes off --in-the-garage thing.
"In fact, I don't know what he said after that.
I was overwhelmed by the image of the city's central apartment building and if we were parked within a block of the front door we would feel lucky.
If I have to do this, going home from the infection will be carefully planned.
After the talks, Potter gave me some guidance on what it means to check the hotel room. (
There are pictures of mattresses and sofa cushions on his website. )
He said unwrap the sheets and check the seams and corners.
When not inflated for a meal, the bed bug is as thin as a piece of paper and can be squeezed into tiny cracks.
Immature bed bugs are smaller and whiter than adults, but bed bug feces leave surprisingly dark stains.
However, according to his experience, a clean mattress does not necessarily mean a clean room, Potter said.
He speculated that interference with the constant linen change of all the maids might take the bugs to other parts of the room, such as the headboard.
When I stayed at this hotel last night, this part of the conversation was with me.
Great location and attractive internet price.
But, after remembering Potter's website, it seems like something weird in the Internet pictures is terrible.
So I put my luggage in the tub, there must be no bed bugs in the tub, and I started pulling the sheets out of the neat bed and looking into the seams. Given the low-
Lights from the wattage hotel, I'm glad I have a small flashlight in my wallet, even though I expect half of the mattress to say, "Ah.
"I moved to the trunk stall.
The idea came from Stephen falls of the University of Minnesota. Paul.
He is also working on bed bugs, but he says he usually just checks the beds and suitcases in the hotel.
However, he admits he is not particularly sensitive to bug bites.
The more people are bitten, the more likely they are to have crazy itching and swollen red wounds.
Kells was lucky to have bed bugs but he was still not easy in the hotel.
He said he was very sensitive to cats and fleas.
I didn't meet anyone who was deliberately bitten, but I didn't meet the entire crew from Virginia Tech. Polanco-
Pinzon told me that when she needed to feed the lab bed bugs with human blood, she turned to her brilliant husband as a consultant. (
Under normal circumstances, the laboratory maintains colonies on chicken blood. )
He said that the husband's reaction to what was bitten was not bad and clearly had a strong commitment to science.
So he allowed the researchers to pour the bed bug's container on his arm.
The mesh covering on the jar allows the bug to poke through his meat.
If he's busy
He's sitting in front of his computer, says Pinzon.
The meal arm and the jar are on his body, just as he is feeding the baby.
I'm not that firm.
I play with the flashlight this way and every surface of the suitcase is like an archaeological treasure.
What I 've found is that even a simple metal bracket with a few straps has an amazing amount of cracks. I’m beat.
I decided to leave my luggage in the tub in case I woke up burning for a new round of bugs.
A key point for entomologists includes a picture of someone sleeping in a bathtub to avoid bed bugs.
It was a joke, and I thought so at the time.
When I was sitting in a Seattle bed fiddling with the clock, I felt the headboard was right behind me.
Now that many hotels have headboards installed on the walls, Porter has discussed some suggestions for checking the mistakes behind them: poke a business card into a crack, or blow a hairdryer into a gap.
I don't think Potter has high hopes for the effectiveness of these technologies.
Something he didn't do. repeat, not —
Recommend tries to remove the headboard from the wall, even if the headboard is just sitting in a slot with no bolts attached.
The headboard, especially the bed's more luxurious headboard, can become heavy enough to strain your back or break your toes.
I tried to put the picture of Potter in my head. I fail.
Headboards fall off the wall with amazing ease.
Although I understand why it is not recommended to do so.
The bed may just be a full bed, not a queen or king, but even the relatively lighter headboard has a lot of area that is wobbling.
I avoid breaking the lights only at the last minute
Minute course correction.
Now I really appreciate the flashlight.
This headboard has beige fabric on the back and is about the color I remember in my never-ripe bed bug photo.
There are thousands of cracks on the fabric.
I started working on it with a flashlight and realized I was leaning against the back of the fabric right now.
No garage at hand but I jump back and take off my sweater and throw it in the tub and remember it should be a bug
My suitcase was free and finally put the sweater in the plastic laundry bag of the hotel.
I changed a shirt and I went back carefully to the headboard.
There was dust but I didn't see any obvious bugs.
So that was last night.
Despite what my East Coast sleep cycle says, it's still evening.
I'm going to lock up my laptop, close my eyes and find something else to worry about.
It's like the headboard is back on the ledge again, but really, really bent.