Grandma has this old jug she uses to water her plants. It’s made of tin, with white paint and a bit of blue and red paint here and there. We think someone made it for her when she was younger. No one is quite sure.
Her grandson cannot understand how this crappy old jug seems to be back in fashion again. He’s never understood this fixation with idle objects.
He’s mischievous and often goes looking for insects, animals, and anything that crawls about. Once his mum found a spider’s nest in his room. It almost frightened her to death. Now she won’t let him have insects in the house.
One day he took Grandma’s jug for a walk to the termite mound; a dirt fortress for insects. He thinks of the king and queens inside, the workers, and the soldiers. There’s a whole world inside.
Inquisitive about how things work, he pours water into the mound to see what happens. Water starts to leak out of the various holes in the mound, but there isn’t much damage. He examines the termites on the ground. Some have wings and some do not. He thinks, “Perhaps Grandma’s jug is useful.“
Not wanting to hurt any of the insects, he retreats for the house. In a few days, he will check on the termite mound to see the results. Not only have the insects repaired the mound, but it has increased in size.
He scribbles down a note, “Experiment number 251. Termites like water. “