“It’s just men and ants. There’s the ants builds their cities, live their lives, have wars, revolutions, until men want them out of the way, and then they go out of the way. That’s what we are now _ just ants.”
― H.G. Wells, The War of the Worlds
This morning I was sitting in a break area waiting for my cup of water to boil in the microwave (to make a cup of coffee in my AeroPress Go) and started looking around (the water boils faster if I don’t look at it). There is a large, high window, a window-wall really, that opens up into a green space atrium.
As I looked at the window I noticed an ant. A single ant, wandering around on the glass, on the outside. I watched the ant for a while, roaming aimlessly, waving antennae. It was windy outside and the ant struggled to keep its footing on the smooth vertical glass – but the surface wasn’t all that clean so there was enough to hold on to.
I checked around to see if there was a column of ants but there was not. This one was all alone. The window is on the third floor and the ant was over my head, a good forty feet above the nearest ground in the atrium below. The ant was moving around but trending upward, away from the ground and, I assume, the colony.
The more I watched the more I felt sorry for the ant. An ant only has meaning in terms of the colony – a single ant is nothing. The ant was lost, alone, a long way from home, and moving with difficulty in the wrong direction. I know how that feels.
There is nothing I could do for the ant and little bubbles started to appear in my water so I went off to make my coffee.