Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Recent Doings

I have been woefully remiss in posting lately, but my whole family has been out of communication working on cleaning up a bit of rental property we maintain (a duplex) before the new residents move in. We've spent significant portions of Friday through Tuesday (and we'll back on Thursday) scrubbing off wallpaper borders, trimming branches and new shoots, weeding the giant asparagus plants out of the garden, yanking old tenant shelves and anchors out of the walls and plastering the resulting holes, and painting, painting, painting and painting. To top it off, the duplex has always had some sort of vendetta against me - it's about the only time I get hurt doing house work (um...on second thought, my parents' cabin doesn't like me much either, I have a good scar from some sheet metal we used during roofing last summer). This time around, a received a sizeable gouge out of my shin from a recalcitrant tree branch and had the exciting experience of standing on top of a yellow jacket nest while cutting some other branches. I felt several little things bounce off of me and thought it was just leaves from the branch I was working on, but when I looked down I noticed a yellow jacket stuck in my leg trying to escape for a second sortie. Eryn was helping me cut branches, so I grabbed her and hurried to the house, but within a few feet she was screaming and I had to yank a yellow jacket out of her arm. Good news, she's not allergic to yellow jackets. After ten minutes with a cold can of Diet Pepsi held to the sting and some commiseration with her stuffed mouse, Cheeser (who was also stung, according to Eryn), she was good as gold. Bad news, I seem to have developed some new allergies since last time I was stung, or perhaps it's because last time it was bumble bees and this time it was yellow jackets. My calf has plumped up like there's a softball under my skin and is spewing enough heat to melt down an ice pack in extremely short order, even three days later. I finally went on Benadryl and Advil, and it seems to be doing quite a bit better. I can't say as much for the yellow jackets who received a healthy dose of spray yesterday. I'd feel bad about that, but they started it, they live ten feet from the back door, and they're not feral honeybees, which have seen a 90% decrease in their population.

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