Saturday, December 27, 2008

Cricket on the Hearth

I believe it is either the Chinese or the Japanese who believe that a cricket on the hearth is good luck. When I was a child, we used to get the most exquisite little bamboo cricket cages from an oriental gift store...sort of an exotic version of Woolworths. Apparently you were supposed to track down your good luck omen and imprison it just to be sure. Hm...not quite my style.
So I was delighted to have this little harbinger of blessings appear on the hearth by the woodstove this morning. It's a camel cricket, very different in appearance from the classic black field cricket that chirps so annoyingly in the fall. These delicate creatures with shiny wingless hunched backs and long threadlike antennae generally live in the basement or outbuildings. This past month is the first time I've seen them on the main floor. They are carnivorous, and not as likely to eat holes in fabrics as the field crickets do.

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