Monthly Archives: July 2015

#ThingsWeTakeForGranted

Okay, I’m a nerd.

I’m a space nerd.

From the moment I laid eyes on Capt. Kirk, I’ve been hooked.

So, when  a friend sent me this video I squeed with delight, and then I realized what I was watching.

Outer space? No big deal.

And isn’t that wonderful?

Then, This Happened….

I’m working on a long, whiny, right-now-incomprehensible, post on my stepfather’s recent illness and death, and my mother’s insanity.

But, while I’m doing that I just wanted to take a moment and mention something awesome that happened at Pensacola Beach last week.

I was standing in barely-ankle deep water when one of these came swimming up to me…

shark

………only it was much smaller..I’d say 2-3 ft..a juvenile lemon shark.

Swimming in front of the shark, at a much faster and more frantic pace, was a smaller fish so I knew right away that the shark wasn’t interested in my toes.

At least I hoped he wasn’t.

I watched him swim right towards me, then move off to my left at the last second, missing his target as my wiggling toes distracted him.

Hubby came over by me and Bruce (that’s his name, now and really I think it’s fitting we’re on a first-name basis as he and I are practically BFFs even if I did interrupt his lunch) again swam towards me, this time he wasn’t chasing anything and as he broke off at the last moment we made eye contact.

It was weird, scary, fascinating, and I loved it.  Later, I realized that if he’d bitten me not only would Bruce be off the Christmas card list forever, but it would’ve hurt.  A. Lot.

But, he didn’t and we shared a moment and now I’m pretty much an expert on juvenile lemon sharks so ask me anything.

Just don’t ask me to go swimming at night off Pensacola Beach.  I think Bruce may hold a grudge.

I Need Bats

Every mosquito in the state of Texas has bitten me, at one time or another.  I’m certain of it.

Every. Single. One.

Bastards.

I cannot go outside, for even one second, during mosquito season (Jan-Dec here in these parts) without getting eaten up.

So, I have a Ritual of Preparation for doing things like taking the dog out or, you know, getting the paper.

The night/day before I eat garlic.  I don’t know why, but I think someone, somewhere one time (at band camp, probably) told me it was good for keeping mosquitos away.

Or was that vampires?

I get those two confused.  I mean, after all, they’re both blood-sucking fiends and never sparkle in the sunlight.  It’s an easy thing to mix up.

After I’m garlic-infused I then cover myself with this wonderful product called “Bite Free”.  It’s a citronella cream that smells like..well, citronella…going on and then in about 15 minutes’ time the scent goes away.  Every part of my body, not covered by clothing, gets the cream.

I’m not done yet.

THEN I spray “Deep Woods OFF” on my clothes, shoes, and as a second layer of protection I spritz some on the exposed skin.

THEN I clip on one of those battery-operated “OFF” thingys…can’t remember what they are called…that’s supposed to create a “mosquito-free zone” around me and anyone within a five foot radius.

After all this, I’m ready to go outside and be….alone.  NO ONE wants to get too close when you’re doused in “OFF”.  I don’t care what scent they add, or want to call it, you still smell like you bathed with a badger in kerosene.

So I sit a little ways removed and enjoy the outdoors…until I start to itch.

There, and there, and there..and dammit…there again!

Going inside I invariably find a cluster of mosquito bites, usually about the size of a quarter, on the ONE SPOT on my body I may, or may not, have missed in the creaming/spraying/zoning ritual.

I currently have just such a spot on the bottom of my left foot.

The bottom. Of. My. Foot.

I have no idea how that happened since I wear shoes outside…and if I wear sandals, the bottoms of my feet get the Ritual.

The only time I’ve not been bothered by mosquitos was when we visited Bull Shoals Lake in northern Arkansas.

When I first noticed, I asked if we could buy the lake and just live there forever.

Hubby thought that might be extreme, but clearly he doesn’t have to deal with what I deal with.

Then I asked a local where all the mosquitos were.

He told me it was because they have bats, lots and lots of bats, living around the lake.

Bats eat mosquitos.

Bats are my new favorite animal ever.

They gave us Batman (hubba, hubba) and dammit they are cute.

I told hubby we needed to get bats and turn them loose in the yard.  He says that won’t work because there are no caves in our backyard.

I told him I thought the bat cave was a made-up thing from television, but he insists it’s not and bats need caves to roost and since I can’t just make a bat cave (because I’m not a millionaire) I’ll have to give up on my dream of a mosquito-free life.

He sure knows how to crush a girl’s dreams.