Worst Week?

Has this been my worst week since moving to Aravaipa?  Up until this morning I would have said no, it’s not so bad. Roo, the horse, stepping on me and mangling my toe hurt, sure.    One more week, the stitches come out and the stripped skin should scab over; a few more weeks the fracture should be healed; a year and maybe the toe nail will grow back, maybe not.   Driving myself to the nearest hospital over an hour away, bleeding all over the accelerator, an ice pack on my foot was an act worthy of the toughest pioneers.  Four hours in the emergency room care was painful and stressful but I got through it.  All in all, I am doing fine.  Then I plopped myself in the bathtub this morning.  I don’t wear contacts when I get in the tub or shower.   Soap in the eyes, a contact popping out and going down the drain, it is a recipe for trouble.  Can’t wear glasses in there either so I go in blind, which means I didn’t see the scorpion hanging out on the washcloth.    Or maybe he was on the bar of soap.  Either way I didn’t see him and proceeded to soap up the washcloth and then washed my face, neck and ears.  When I got to the right ear, I felt a little sting, the kind you get when a tiny sliver of wood pierces your skin.  I reached up to my ear but felt nothing until a similar sting in my left index finger.   Nothing on my finger, I held up the washcloth close to my face to look and there he was a squashed scorpion! 

Have you ever seen a scorpion?  Nasty bugs, they look like mini lobsters aiming for you with front pincers but it’s the tail that stings you.  It whips around from behind lightening fast.   This was not my first encounter with a scorpion.   A month ago I found one in the kitchen sink desperately trying to climb out of the garbage disposal.  Huge, ugly and terrifying I tried to catch him in an empty jelly jar but he couldn’t climb out of the drain.  Finally I took a knife and pushed him down the disposal.   The disposal was not working though so I went to Plan B and poured two tea kettles of boiling water down the drain.  Later David asked why I didn’t try to unclog the drain but there was no way I was sticking my hand down into the scorpion pit.   He might be scalded but who knows?   Fingernails and hair continue to grow for a bit after death, scorpion stingers might do the same.

I threw the washcloth, soap, scorpion and all, out of the tub, terrified he might fall in the water with me.   In a frenzy, I splashed water all over me to knock any other potential scorpions off me.  But I was alone.  Thank God!  I squinted over the side of the tub to see the soapy green washcloth on the ceramic tile floor.  I wadded up my towel and tossed it on top of the washcloth as a defensive measure, then hoisted myself out of the tub, no easy task when you have one foot bandaged to twice its size and hanging over the edge giving you no leverage.  I got out and started stomping the towel with my good foot, squirting soap and water all over.  Still dripping with water myself, I carefully lifted the towel and shook it out over the tub.  Then I picked up the washcloth.   The scorpion skittered away towards the bathroom door!  Naked, no shoes, a bandaged foot, I had nothing to crush him!  A piece of wood sat behind the dryer.   I grabbed it, threw it down on the bug and stepped down hard!  I heard the most satisfying crunch.   Turning the board, there was the scorpion, flatter than a credit card, embedded into the board.  I placed the board back on the floor, scorpion side down and gave it an extra stomp.  Four hours later he is still there and I am scrubbing and spraying insecticide like a maniac. 

 I am living in a war zone.  Snakes, scorpions, horses, spiders, tarantulas, gila monsters, mesquite and cholla needles, my legs and arms are crosshatched with scratches, scars and bug bites. Everything is waiting to either take a bite out of me or sting me.  And why?  I’m a nice person.  I respect my environment, I love nature.   Let it be is my motto and I spend my time watching my step so I can take care to avoid disrupting the wilderness.   Exhausted I am sitting here, foot elevated and propping a bag of frozen organic blueberries with my left index finger on my right ear.  If it is not the worst week, it’s certainly up there.

4 Comments

  1. Comment by Angelique Welch

    Posted on June 11, 2011 at 2:28 pm

    I can totally relate! I am just South of you in the Chiricahua Trail Ranches near Willcox.

  2. Comment by Angelique Welch

    Posted on June 11, 2011 at 2:28 pm

    I can totally relate! I am just South of you in the Chiricahua Trail Ranches near Willcox.

  3. Comment by owner

    Posted on June 13, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    Hey! you are close! Haven’t been to Willcox yet but plan to get there soon.

  4. Comment by owner

    Posted on June 13, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    Hey! you are close! Haven’t been to Willcox yet but plan to get there soon.

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