Fears of a bedbug outbreak in Hong Kong have terrified people out of their wits. South Korea, Paris, and London already have bedbug outbreaks. Experts say the resumption of international travel after the Covid pandemic could cause a bedbug outbreak in Hong Kong. Many people had butterflies in their stomach seeing social media pictures of a bedbug on an Airport Express train and on a KMB bus. There was panic buying of insect killers after the pictures went viral. If you are terrified out of your wits, it means you are very scared. If you have butterflies in your stomach, it means you feel very nervous about something.
The word “panic” means a strong feeling of anxiety or fear. To panic buy means to buy far more of something than people need because they are afraid supplies will run out. One retailer said it sold about $2 million worth of bedbug-killing products in just one day. The Airport Express and KMB have disinfected their trains and buses. But experts say bedbugs are as common as mosquitoes. Both suck blood from humans but bedbugs don’t spread diseases like mosquitoes. The experts said people can avoid bedbugs with good hygiene and simple precautions.
I admit I also have butterflies in my stomach when I use public transport after reading about bedbugs on an Airport Express train and a KMB bus. There is little risk of bedbugs hiding in MTR train seats because the seats are made of steel. But I always stand when riding the MTR. Bedbugs, however, can easily hide in the cushioned seats of buses and Airport Express trains.
香港害怕爆發床蝨之患，已經嚇得人們魂不附體（terrified people out of their wits）。南韓、巴黎和倫敦都已爆發床蝨。專家指，新冠肺炎疫症以後恢復國際旅遊，可以導致香港亦爆發床蝨。許多人從社交媒體的圖片中，看到機場快線列車和九巴上也有床蝨的蹤影，便忐忑不安（butterflies in their stomach）。圖片瘋傳後，人們恐慌性搶購（panic buying）滅蟲產品。若你是terrified out of your wits，意即你怕得要命、給嚇死了。若你有butterflies in your stomach，意即你對某事感到非常緊張、心慌。
Panic解作驚慌、恐慌；to panic buy是指盲目、瘋狂搶購一樣東西，多於自己所需用的，因為他們擔心供貨會短缺甚或售罄。一個零售商說，他們單單一天就賣出總值差不多200萬元的殺滅床蝨產品。機場快線和九巴亦有消毒其列車和巴士車廂。但專家們說，床蝨就跟蚊子一樣常見。兩者都會吸血，但床蝨不會像蚊一樣傳播疾病。專家們說，擁有良好衞生與簡單的預防措施，就可以避免床蝨出現。
我承認，在讀過關於床蝨在機場快線和九巴出沒的消息後，我使用公共交通工具時也會忐忑不安（butterflies in my stomach）。港鐵車廂座位都是以鋼鐵製成的，因此可以藏匿床蝨的風險較小，但每當搭港鐵時，我還總是站着。然而，床蝨卻容易躲藏在巴士和機場快綫的褥墊座位之中。