One of things I like most about being in pest control is the fact that you get to meet new and interesting people every day and face situations that you’d never encounter in other careers. Over the past 12 years, I’ve met a ton of people and have visited too many households to count. I’ve enjoyed never knowing what to expect, and learned so much from the people I’ve been able to share company with.  One home that I know for sure that I’ll never forget is the home of an 85 year old lady that lived in a lower income area in Bakersfield. I didn’t know how much of an impact she’d have on me until I had the opportunity to talk with her over the next month and a half during services. We will call her Gale. I met Gale during the Christmas season a few years back. At the time, we decided to give away a free service away each year during the Christmas season to people in need who couldn’t afford to hire a pest control company. Gale’s granddaughter contacted us and asked that we come over and give them a quote for service. When I arrived I was shocked at what I found. Gale was in a rocking chair covered in roaches. As I looked around the room, There was very little space available without thousands of roaches. It was clear that there was a horrible roach infestation for many years. The other shocking thing that I noticed: Gale was blind. I couldn’t allow her to remain in these circumstances any longer. How could she live like this for so long? I felt a strong communication directly from God that I was sent to help Gale. I informed Gale and her family that I was selecting them for the donation service and that I felt strongly that we were meant to cross each other’s paths. I treated the home as much as I could with what I brought and told them that I’d have to return with a roach vacuum as there were too many roaches to control with regular treatment methods. I returned the next day with my roach vacuum. I remember vacuuming for 2 hours straight. Every time I vacuumed a spot, thirty seconds later new roaches would appear again. What stood out more than the roaches was the positive attitude that Gale had about life and family. She was one of the most humble people that I’d every met. Every service she would greet me with a smile and ask me to describe the weather to her. She’d also ask me about what was new in the world and how my family was doing. We got to know each other quite a bit. The t.v. or radio was always on. She’d listen intently to learn the latest news or follow along the current show that was playing.  It wasn’t uncommon for her to ask about my wife and kids and tell me how blessed we both were. Never once did she complain about her situation. Never once did she feel like it was the world against her. She was always full of joy, optimism and gratitude. Amazingly after 4 services, two weeks apart, we were able to control her roach infestation one hundred percent. I remember her phone call a few weeks after the final visit. She had her niece dial me directly for her. I answered the phone excited to see how things were going. Full of emotion, she thanked me for all that I had done for her. She thanked God for sending us to her home. It was wonderful knowing that we were able to play a role in Gale’s life. What she didn’t know is that she played a role in my life as well. Since meeting Gale, I’ve tried to look at the positives in life and to not sweat the small stuff. I’ve also been able to look at situations that I used to think were horrible and challenging as minor bumps in the road of life. We are all so blessed. If we patiently and intently look around ourselves we will see positivity. We can be half glass empty folks or half glass full folks; it’s up to us! Thanks Gale for touching my life…

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By: Sam de Jong

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