Tuesday, May 27, 2008

A Princess' Attempt at Getting Back to Nature (stop laughing)

So I spent the long weekend in the mountains with a girlfriend (hi, K! Don’t I make us sound glamorous and not at all like we went to bed at 9:00 every night?) and I had a really good time. I miss being in the mountains a lot. I actually had to fight off what felt like a looming anxiety attack as we packed the car to head back to Denver. Mostly I think that has to do with the fact that I don’t really feel like working anymore, so much as I feel like sitting on the deck of a log cabin drinking house wine as I listen to a mountain steam rush by. When I actually LIVED in the mountains, I had to work. And, well, let’s just say it’s a good thing I didn’t have a blog at the time, because whoo-boy I used to fill my fresh mountain air days with incessant whining. Whining about the cold. About the snow. About my boss. About the wildlife. Dern wildlife. Yeah, maybe it’s retirement I’m craving more than nature. Whatever.

So anywhos, I felt myself very hard core, as we spent the days hiking and crawling under large trees and scrambling and tempting fate to wring our poor little ankles like pipe cleaners. And then a BLIND GUY came tromping past me as I sat on a rock to catch my breath by a majestic waterfall.


You only get a picture of the waterfall and not the blind guy, because I felt kinda sleazy about taking his picture. Not that he would have seen me. (uhg, did I really just say that?) I just didn’t feel comfortable. That, and he was also with two guides helping him along, who seemed to see me just fine. But STILL. The guy was blind. And came scrambling up the mountain right past my weary, but 20-20-visioned ass.

But this only goes to prove that you do not really need to be hard core to see this:


And this:


And this:


all in one day when you are lucky enough to live in Colorado.

Of course, you also might see the world’s largest and scariest moth ever.


And you will go squealing inside like a piglet until your friend peer pressures you into taking a picture. At which point you will probably squeal some more.

You also might come home and find a tick buried neck-deep into your thigh. I know I did. That was awesome. And also might have elicited some more squealing. So I put nail polish remover on it, just like my mom used to do when we were kids. And as I sat there, soaking it in what I WAS going to use to remove my now-chipped pedicure (side note: I am long overdue for new hiking boots) I googled “tick removal” and every entry I got said, “Whatever you do, do not light it with a match (!) or soak it in rubbing alcohol or nail polish remover. This can cause it to regurgitate poison into the skin.”


So I dialed ask-a-nurse, and told her I had a tick, and that I had tried to remove it with nail polish remover, but had just read I wasn’t supposed to do that. “NO! DON’T DO THAT!” said the nurse.

Ah, right. Well, see, as I said, I ALREADY DID. So now what? Because it’s still in my thigh and WIGGLING. I don’t think it likes the acetone sauna I gave it.

So she told me to grasp it with tweezers as close to the skin as possible and pull it out. Do you even want to guess how much squealing was involved in that process, as I tried to clamp down (but not kill) the insect with its head in my body and wiggling its buggy little legs? I think I shattered a few glasses.

But the tick came out, I wrapped it in the nail polish remover-drenched tissue, and threw it away. And then drank some wine, because even though I wanted to detox after a weekend of subsisting off of cupcakes and wine (do you SEE why I was in heaven?) I really, really needed something alcoholic after that ordeal. Do they make moutains without ticks? I'd like to get me some of those.


Princess of the Universe said...

Ticks- those are the reason that I do NOT believe in nature. They creep me out at an irrationally primal level!

rebekah @ elizabeth anne designs said...

Oh boy. I just had one last week (thanks river!) and did the match thing. Now I'm scared.

Wickedly Scarlett said...

Oh see, I was right there with you and thinking I should just tie on my shoes and dash out for a little hike this afternoon. And then I got to the tick part. And I remembered why I don't ever go outside. UGH!!

Nick, Holly & Maren said...

VASELINE on the tick is what I learned you are supposed to do (suffocates it, I think). And what the camp nurse did when I got a tick on my neck. Which incidentally happened just as my friends and I were talking about how much it would suck to get a tick. I seriously thought my friend was joking when she said, "oh my god! you have a tick on your neck!" Alas - she was not.
You are too generous, trying to save the life of something that just regurgitated poison into your leg....

meno said...

We have mountains without ticks.

You okay with snakes?

Lily said...

OMG!!! What the crap kind of hellish insects do you have in the states!!?
Ticks?? I thought those went on animals only? I honestly did not know....Uuuugh!!! This gives me goose-bumps.
If I ever find a bug trying to crawl into my skin, squealing is the tamest thing I will do.

Princess in Galoshes said...

Princess U- They creep me out, too! Yeech.

Rebekah- If you're not sick by now, I wouldn't worry about it.

Scarlett- Don't let ticks scare you out of hiking, it's worth it, I promise!

Holly- I think Vaseline has the same affect as the alcohol, the idea is to suffocate them, but it actually makes them regurgitate in the skin. I wasn't being nice when I pulled it out with tweezers, I was just doing what the nurse said to do. I killed that stupid bug the second it was out.

Meno- I am totally o.k. with snakes, as long as they don't attack me.

Lily, I know, gross, huh? Do you not have ticks up there in Quebec?

Snark Scribe said...

Regurgitating poison?

This is why I hide in the safe indoors.