Bitten by the Bug

No I haven't taken up a new hobby. Instead I'm becoming slightly exasperated. There was a time when I associated fly bites with holidays in warmer climes, now it seems that the insects in our garden have decided to turn on me.

Worse still, it's now September and with a couple of days of unseasonally high temperatures, the local fly life is back, determined to outdo even Dracula with its blood sucking fetish.

Okay, I know that here in the North of England, we've enjoyed a warmer summer than usual but that still doesn't mean Yorkshire has grown a population of mosquitoes and whilst midges have always been a nuisance, I can't recall ever reacting to their bites particularly.

I swear my new enemy is the common house fly but when I looked them up, discovered they can't bite because of overlapping mouth parts. Well, all I can say is their suck is pretty painful too.

Also whatever it is that keeps getting trapped on the inside of my sandal strap and then thinks its clever to squeeze its way out, nipping as it goes, had better watch out because I am in no mood for any more red lumps on my feet.

Talking to friends of the same generation, we all seem to have suffered this summer, much more so than younger family members. Is it perhaps an age thing, decreasing immunity and all that, or do we just have more time to spend outdoors, thus increasing the risk of falling prey to something nasty? Why suddenly has walking across the lawn become such a hazard when there was a time long ago I'd actually stretch out in the privacy of my own garden sunbathing and completely untouched by the unseen adversary that now sits lurking beneath every blade of grass?

Has it reached the stage that Eau d'Insect Repellent needs pride of place on the dressing table? Silver linings and all that, it's at least a great deal cheaper than Chanel but, and I suppose that's the idea, it does smell quite disgusting. 

I've been researching natural fly deterrents and was surprised to see that alongside citronella and cloves, they don't like vodka. I think you are meant to spray it but perhaps drinking it might have the same effect and, at the very least, anaesthetise the desire to scratch when you are bitten.

Should retirement summers carry a health warning on the risks of  attack and reaction?  Are anti-histamines to become the Ecstasy of the older generation or do we venture out only dressed as beekeepers? Is there actually a problem here that hasn't been generally recognised or am I  being unnecessarily hysterical, imagining a sinister issue when none exists?  Perhaps I'm just unlucky.



Treaders said…
You could try rubbing vodka on your legs I suppose but that would be an awful waste of good vodka wouldn't it!
Caree Risover said…
Brings a new dimension to Rubbing Alcohol and I’d probably end up attracting biting flies with a penchant for hardened drinkers
Marksgran said…
Tell me about it!! I feel your pain (itch). I'm getting bitten in some of the most disturbing places too. How do they get there I want to know. I wear my big pants at all times :D Here in Scotland we've had a brilliant summer but the downside is the nipping beasties. I got a nasty one just yesterday and I didn't even step out the door all day! I'm hoping now that the weather has broken a bit, perhaps the beasties will go away to warmer climes and leave me alone!
Caree Risover said…
Sorry to hear about your misery too, Marksgran, but dare I say comforting to know it’s indeed a wider spread phenomenon than just my own locality
I'm not a fan of any insects that bite or sting! Have you tried a deet free bug spray?
Caree Risover said…
You know, this is the first summer in my life that I have actually considered applying a bug spray to go out into my own garden or even, come to think of it, in the UK except in a few midge infected areas when camping
Winifred said…
First time I've ever been bitten in our garden in the North East too. I don't even get bitten in on holiday in the Med!
No idea what it was & it's taken over 3 weeks to heal. Nasty! Must remember to use the Avon Skin So Soft dry oil spray.
Caree Risover said…
Is that based on the citronella lotion that was coincidentally discovered to deter midges and became an overnight sensation? I’d forgotten all about it . Just looked it up now and see even the Marines are reputed to use it!

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