Become a Fan
By Carol Roach
Saturday, August 04, 2007
Not rated by the Author.
With the summer comes mosquitoes; lots of them.
Summer is here and they are out in droves, those pesky little biters that ruin our beautiful summers. Sometimes I wonder if mosquitoes were put on this earth just to annoy me. But then if that was the case God sure didn’t make over 2,500 varieties of them. Of course not all those varieties are in North America, and still less in Canada, but if there was just one type of mosquito, or even just one mosquito in a room it would find its way to me.
I don’t know why I am so prone to mosquito or any insect bite for that matter. I have always been that way. I grow up in the city so I was not plagued with these unwanted creatures for the most part. It was only when I went to the country that I remember them biting me. Yes I wore eau de off scented with Deet, my cologne of choice but they still bit. They bit so much they drove me crazy. There was literally no place on my body left untouched. Once I was even bit inside my ear, not to mention the areas I could not even reach.
My grandmother and my uncle would tell me to stop scratching, I was only making it worst. I couldn’t help myself, scratching brought temporary relief, nothing else really did. It didn’t matter if it was calamine lotion, or my grandmother’s home remedy of rubbing salt into the bite. Nothing worked like a good old scratch. I’d scratch them until they bled. I wanted to scratch them right off my body into oblivion.
To add salt to the wound, pun very much intended, my uncle would sit there and watch me scratch. He did not have a single mosquito bite. The rest of my family might have had a few yet no way where they attacked like I was. Why me I cried out.
“It’s got to be your blood. It’s too sweet,” my uncle would say.
“Well I don’t want to be sweet. I want to be left alone,” I would plead.
I stopped going to the country after my early teenage years. I no longer wanted to be tormented by mosquitoes, leeches in the water, or any other creature assailing my body. By this time I found country living rather boring anyway. I was a city girl tried and true .
As the years went by I forgot about the mosquitoes until my husband and I took our 9 month old son to Barbados with us for a family wedding /vacation. Once again my arch enemy the mosquito found my blood a tasty exotic delight. Of course my husband was not affected. He didn’t have one bite the entire trip. This time however I was not alone, if I was lunch, my baby was dessert. The poor child had about 20 bites on his face alone by the time we got back home to Canada.
My grandmother was literally disgusted when she saw his face. However, it wasn’t like there was much I could do about it. He was “blood of my blood”.
We lived in the city so they cleared up and eventually went away. Since then he is like me, mainly getting bit if he went out to the country for summer sleepover camp, or a day excursion with the school.
We always lived in apartments and flats without backyards until recently. Now, for the last two years I have been living in a bottom flat complete with front and back yard. I wouldn’t change my home for the world but I certainly can do with out the mosquitoes. The horrors of my youth are back. These creatures are once again eating me alive. Believe me we don’t have a swimming pool or any containers with standing water to attract them.
Only now mosquitoes are more dangerous than they are annoying. When I was growing up we heard of Malaria in Africa, and later Dengue Fever, both caused by mosquitoes, but that was very far away. These diseases were not a threat to us. Today, the USA and Canada now realizes the danger of West Nile Virus transmission through mosquitoes since it has reached our shores.
The West Nile Virus can produce mild flu like symptoms and muscles aches to severe brain inflammation; encephalitis, or meningitis and death. The transmission of the virus is most potent in late August and September just before the weather gets cold enough for them to die out. At this point in time there is no human vaccine available for the disease. For more info see: http://www.healthline.com/adamcontent/west-nile-virus
As I scratch these terrible bites again this summer I remember why I never liked the country all that much as a child. This year my feet and ankles are mostly infected.
In years gone by I could forget about the bites as soon as the summer was over, now I cannot. Since I contracted diabetes, my skin does not heal like it used to and marks from the bites remain from one year to the next.
All in all, if all I get are scars and not the West Nile Virus, I can still consider myself lucky, itchy but lucky all the same.
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|Reviewed by Jean Pike
|Carol, I could not have said it better myself. I, too, am of the "sweet blood" variety. Mosquitos love me, but I sure don't love them! Wish I could offer some remedy for the itchy bites, but if there is one, I haven't found it yet. I enjoyed this story.
Visit my den sometime!
|Reviewed by m j hollingshead