Sunday, 5 June 2011

A story with a sting in the tail

Hands up who likes picnics.  Hands up those who love sunny evenings when you can eat your dinner on the patio.  Hands up those who like to take a drink outside in the evening and sit on the swing chair in the garden and watch the sun go down.  I had my hand up for all three of those, but with a proviso.  Only until the end of August.  Because what happens in England in September?  Wasps.  Nasty, malicious creatures that hunt me down and terrorise me.  'Keep calm' says The Husband.  'Flapping your arms around and getting agitated only attracts them more'.  He calmly sits there, a wasp will settle by him and with the flick of middle finger and thumb, he's stunned it and moments later it is gone.  He cannot remember being stung by a wasp - I can.  For it has happened more times than I care to remember.  And where does this deep seated hatred of wasps come from?  Let me tell you the story of when I discovered my fear of the nasty black and yellow monsters, and divulge who is responsible ...
So, it's late summer and my big sister has offered to take me to the park to keep me amused.  I am probably about 3, which makes her about 11.  'If you come home via the cricket field, don't go near the trees at the end, there are wasp nests in them' warns my mum as we leave.  So we head off for the swings, me probably skipping along happy to be out on my own with my big sis, and her probably a bit sulky as there would be a million other things she would rather be doing than entertaining her little sister.  After a lovely time at the park, and a treat of a lolly from the ice cream van, we head for home.  Me, tired and happy with that lovely strawberry stickiness all over my face because let's face it, at that age you can't eat a lolly cleanly and wet wipes hadn't been invented yet.  Her, anxious to be home.  I obviously wasn't walking fast enough because she decided to put me on her shoulders so we could walk home faster than toddler pace.  And what way did she decide to go home ? - under the trees where the wasp nests were.  With me on her shoulders, head brushing along the lower branches of the trees, covered in sugar.  I'll leave you to draw your own conclusions to the story but suffice it to say, she was in trouble and I was in pain.  And they wonder why I'm scared of wasps!

32 comments:

Amy said...

Oh dear ... mosquitoes have a thing for me - apparently I am quite delicious! Big sisters are responsible for so much!

Mary B said...

Oh poor you no wonder you have such a fear of them, but your husband is right flapping about will not get them away from you.

scrappyjacky said...

I'm another who hates them...and it takes quite an effort to stay calm...but I've never had quite that nasty an experience!

Rachel B said...

Oh dear! As a big sister I can only agree with Amy - Opps! How awful that you now have a fear though x

Ladkyis said...

As someone with a serious wasp sting allergy I sympathise with your need to flap. I have to prevent flappage by putting one hand across my mouth and nose (then they can't get in and sting)and holding it there with the other hand while screaming quietly to my husband "WASP! WASP!do something!" This is said with lips closed of course.

Wanda said...

With that kind of introduction, it's no wonder you're scared of them. I wonder if they have the ability to sense that someone is more afraid than most?

Jimjams said...

OMG - no wonder you don't like them. I too have been stung - one got down inside a welly boot at a hot summer guide camp in a field recently vacated by cows - couldn't get it out or the boot off in time!!! To this day wellies flapping on bare legs give me the heebie jeebies no matter what time of year!

JO SOWERBY said...

i have to admit i have been stung but i an advocate of the calm sitting when they are around. my mum is allergic to wasp and bee stings so we have to be super vigilant when she's around. the first time she ended up having her wedding ring cut off and then it only got worse over time,
jo xxx

Cheri said...

I'm right there with you on the wasps. My version involves a 12 year old me, a detached garage in the country, and a group of friends and siblings dressing up to create a "play". A wasp got up under a long sleeved piece of clothing and before I could get it off I was stung a good half dozen times.

Around here we get yellow jackets. And they are nasty. My girls are terrified of them.

Becky said...

Ooh, this story made me wince! You poor thing. I also have been stung numerous times by wasps - the worst was when I put on a gardening glove, thought ow, that hurt, must be a thorn and pushed my hand in the glove again, only to get stung twice on the same finger! I now check my gloves very carefully before putting them on!

Jane said...

that sounds awful, I hate wasps too

Sian said...

Eugh, you really made me gasp! And wince! Your stories are always a treat, you can conjure up the picture so vividly. I love it.

Thanks for adding a story today Deb.

furrypig said...

how awful no wonder you were traumatised! I was stung age about 3 when I was on my trike licking an icecream and a bee landed on it at the same time as I licked it ... ouch!

Lynn said...

I often wonder what is the point of wasps apart from to bring terror to a lovely August day! Loved your story telling - you paint a vivid picture.

humel said...

Eek - I can't stand wasps, and I don't have as much reason as that! But one morning a couple of years ago I was drowsing happily when I felt a tickle on my leg. I twitched it impatiently, only to be vicously stung - the little stripey blighter had got into my BED! I loathe and detest the things!

Ginger said...

I like enjoy all those summer activities as well, but we get wasps too. We bought some glass wasp catchers that still need to be hung outside :) I certainly do not blame you for reacting how you do, those memories stick with us!

Alison said...

OMGosh..no wonder you're scared! I was stung for the first time ever, just last year...I didn't like it!!
Alison xx

Denise said...

I think I'd be scared of them too - I hate spiders more than wasps though x

Karen said...

I'm with you on the wasp hatred. Love bees but hate wasps. Even worse we get hornets here - wasps that are over an inch long!

jennifer said...

Oh, poor you! I can understand why you'd still be scared of them. I'm sure your big sister didn't really mean harm to come to you though! x

Melissa said...

Oh ouch! I definitely had my hand up for all three questions, too, but usually in July & August it's too hot even in the evenings to sit out here.

Beverly said...

ugh right there with you, I actually almost have a mini panic attack but for me it is much more yellow jackets than wasps, since I am highly allergic to them

Gail said...

Oh yuck! I'm just shuddering thinking about it. I've had a couple of nasty wasp stings and don't want anymore and don't get me anywhere near mosquitoes - I'm allergic to them.

WendyB said...

I'm with you here Deb, I hate the things and yes I always managed to get stung by them somehow (and anything else that flies and stings too) What an introduction to them though, and at such an early age.

cate said...

I totally understand your anxiety - wasps put me in hospital! big sisters have so much to answer for (wonder if I, as the big sister in our house, ever did anything to terrify my siblings?)

S said...

Ouch! I think I'd be wary if I were you too.

Maria Ontiveros said...

Oh my gosh! That's a scary story!
My daughter seems to get stung a lot and then swells up quite a bit (though the doctors say it's not a life threatening allergy; just one that makes her truly miserable).
Rinda

Miriam said...

Oh my goodness you have every reason to hate them!
You tell a great story.

favouriteworkofart said...

Love the way you told your story!

Ruth said...

Hooray, finally able to comment! I had to smile at the picture you painted, but poor you. I think I'd be scared as an adult, too, if I'd had that happen to me.

Louise said...

oh my!! poor you. great story.
Thanks for stopping by mine and leaving a lovely comment.

Deb @ Paper Turtle said...

LOL. I love this story, Deb! And so funny that your big sister is to blame. I still get blamed for my younger sister "breaking her toe" though all I was doing was chasing her - so it ends up being MY fault. Great story! xo