1st let me give you a little reference from the Wikihow.com on CHIGGERS!
""Chiggers are tiny mites which are members of the arachnid family, a cousin of spiders and ticks. The larval stage of chigger can attach itself to your skin and feed, but they do not burrow under the skin as it is sometimes assumed.""
There are a few things in my life I've really wanted to avoid experiencing and chiggers are one of them. Leaches are another and believe me when I say this, I WILL avoid this at any and all costs because you are not going to catch me in ANY body of water that has these festering creatures ready to attach themselves to my succulent flesh. So don't expect to come back and read a blog later on about leaches.
This is it!
Now about a week ago I decided to take an excursion to the arboretum, it was a lovely late afternoon and the temperature had just dropped to a cool 99 degrees Fahrenheit. My plans of late has been to pick one day a week to traipse about town and take photographs as well as write down my experiences into the blog. These are the days to find moments of beauty (or oddity) and live it fully.
Right outside the arboretum's gates is a very lovely bush that is currently blooming with golden flowers that really grabs my eye each time I drive by. Every time I say to myself, this is the day I'll go in and each time I end up passing by and go home or go to the store or go to the Dr. or go...you get the idea.
Not this time though, I told the husband "Let's GO! and off we went. I grabbed an extra set of AA batteries for my crappy little Kodak EasyShare and hopped into the Ford to go. Not dressed for any excursion, (I never am) we went.
I am wearing track pants, open toed rubber sandals and a t-shirt which is just begging for trouble but c'mon it can't be that bad walking along paved trails! Besides, you're supposed to wear long pants whenever walking nearby plants or in the woods.
This is where I get stupid (applying properly dopey face) and invite my tick-like friends. I cannot resist certain photographic scenarios and aspects. My 'eye' for certain shots requires that I climb on top of, beneath, along side..even LAY down besides something to get just the right perspective.
well LOW AND BEHOLD, I clumber my hulk down ...first kneeling down and leaning in to get a snap at a beautiful strawberry-cactus but then I can't stand it and have to get a panoramic snapshot and therefore here I go (kneeling becomes laying)!
I've chosen to forgo the kneel and move down onto my belly, you know this is really quite crazy because I can't stand to even lay on my own living room floor (EWWW) yet I had not a single qualm laying in the dirt, pebbles, dust and scrabble just to get this snapshot.
There are other people wandering around including a statuesque woman with an outstanding telephoto lens Nikon (which was making me jizz my silks). I could care less about any of them because I'm entranced with the 'light' and wanting to get just the right shot.
When I get up, I brush against a rather sharp bunch of cacti (YEOWCH) and exclaim, "I shoulda worn jeans!"
The arboretum was beautiful and I spent nearly and hour outdoors which is a very long trip for me in the great outdoors. Fresh 'air' and nature really don't agree with me too much, I was reaching for H20 and my fast acting inhaler frequently. Worth it 150% though, there's no complaining going on here. My own yard would never even look 10% as nice as this parcel of land. We're lucky to get the grass mowed once a month, its usually ankle high before someone gets outside to cut it.
The day after the trip, my pictures uploaded onto Facebook and I'm glowing from my sun exposure and rave reviews from friends I find myself not so gently scratching..scratching. Nothing new here, but I don't bother to look because quite frankly the less I look at myself naked the less likely I will want to eat massive quantities of pills or my .22.
Alas, the itching won't go away and after a lengthy nap from the Benedryl I apprehensively approach the looking glass, stripping away my clothing and exposing my chunky belly, thighs and can.
HOLY JESUS MOTHER OF CHRIST - NOT AGAIN
I have blisters, papules and bruising like star-bursts as big as a quarter scattered here and there on my thighs.
Why'Oh'Why must I taste as wonderful as orange sorbet? Why must my skin be so tender that the tiniest of creatures can cause so much damage that I am screaming now inside of my head and now petrified to step foot into a lawn ever again?
Alas I am left to find out how to deal with these buggers since this has never happened to me before. The city girl.
We've heard it all before, the alternative ways to deal with this or that malady.
Funny thing, Googling chiggers and most do come up with nail polish and Vaseline. Sounds kinky but I'll give it a try, if anything else I'll get high on the fumes and then be lubed and ready to be taken advantage of.
Seriously though (laughing at the idea from above) the best defense against this (since the damage is now done) is to just take a hot soapy bath and then chase it with hydrocortisone for the itching
Don't scratch, for certain your going to aggravate it and possibly cause an infection (you know damn well I'm going to screw this up and be sick) and just cope.
Tonight I yanked the sheets off the bed, have considered burning them in the yard but I'm frugal (i.e. cheap) and will just launder them again.
Then I gave myself a rather nifty barbering while in the bathroom, there's no fancy landing strip ...just a well shorn putting green (PUKE glad it's not actually green) and went to work in the shower. I had the opposite of a horny teenagers wet dream cool off.
Started the water off with a simmering heat, if I were green beans I'd have been finished in 7 minutes but instead I kept cranking the knobs until I was at a full rolling boil and my skin was lobster red all the while lathering a'la Dove.
Making sure I only hand lathered without using nails or washcloth that could aggravate the situation and any leftover minuscule monsters could have dug in for more leverage!
I'm clean again.
The bugs are gone I pray.
in a few days my skin should peel off and regenerate again - maybe I will look 10 years younger!
Someone remind me not to play in the flowers and trees again.