Daily Archives: June 16, 2012
The 30DoC Inspiration Calendar says the theme for the 16th Day is STING!
“Pssst, the STING is on! Pass it on!”
It is a well-known fact, (at least to me) that tiny flying creatures with volatile, vorpal stingers plan their attacks which are known as “stings” well in advance … often with turncoat human assistance.
Case in point … my Aunt Edna also known as the human foil of a band of snicker-snacking yellow jackets.
In my 12th summer, I was spending the day visiting my Grandmother. Since my Aunt Edna lived with my grandmother, she was there, too.
Now. my grandmother lived in a four-family flat in old north Saint Louis. Across the back of the back yard there was strip of wooden outhouses fronting the alley. Some of them were, in early days prior to indoor plumbing, actually outhouses. The rest of them were storage sheds, and in the middle there was a plank door that exited onto the alley. Back in those days, people seldom used the front door of a home for entrances or exits. They used the back door by way of the alley door.
Well, the week before my visit my aunt discovered a swarm of yellow jackets had formed a nest on the edge of the alley door and they would fly out at her whenever she entered or exited the back yard. On the day of my visit she decided we would wipe out the vicious buggers. Her plan — I would exit the door and hold it open while the wasps flew out to attack me. While they flew to attack me she would wipe them out with a hand-pump sprayer of Wasp-Wipeout! This was before they invented aerosol bug sprays.
So, like an unwilling pawn, I opened the door and the bugs flew out to attack me. Unfortunately, hand-pumped sprayers in the hands of my Aunt Edna never work, and the wasps attacked me with repeated snicker-snacking attacks. Finally, my Aunt got the pump to work and she began spraying me. It didn’t thwart the insects, but it did thwart me and a slammed the door and ran down the alley followed by a swarm of intoxicated wasps. I ran down the alley and around to the front yard gate.
My grandmother made me take my bug spray-soaked clothes off and had me get in the bath tub where she hand-scrubbed the poison off of me. By this time my Aunt Gert had arrived home and added to my indignity by examining my wasp wounds … aka stings. I had a couple on my arms and one directly under my eye. My Aunt Gert was the practical sister compared to my Aunt Edna, unfortunately she was an encyclopedia of old wife’s tales and occult medical treatments. And her treatment for swollen insect stings and bite was to cover it with a freshly slice onion. And she promptly stuck one right on the sting directly under my eye. This lead to a lot more tears! I sometimes wonder how I survived my aunts who thankfully never married and produced children of their own. The onion, however, did reduce the swelling under my eye.
30DoC – Day 16