Monday, November 1, 2010

The Not-In-The-Tourist-Guide Adventure

Dear Readers,

If the Boy and I have nothing planned for the weekend, we like to have an "Adventure."  We have a lot of places we want to explore in our new home region, so if we schedule an Adventure, we're more likely to do them.

We've had some good ones so far:

This Saturday, we were talking about what adventure to have this weekend, when I noticed a scab just below my left knee.  I took a closer look--well, I went to pick at it, because that's what I do, and as the Boy was yelling at me not to pick it, I realized it was moving.

I had a tick.  A TICK!

Being a mostly city person, I've never had a tick before.  We don't live too far from nature now, though, so I've been trying to acclimate myself to becoming a little more outdoorsy, which means more walking among the trees.

On Friday, I had to drive the Boy to work, and on my way home, I stopped at a conservation area to take a little walk.  It was nice (we've had gorgeous sunny weather lately--a little cold, but the sun is so nice I don't mind), but uneventful.  I wandered through trees and a field.  Didn't run into anybody--except a 4 1/2 month old puppy who bounded up to me to say hello.

And 24 hours later, I spotted the tick, happily feasting on my blood.

I'm not going to deny that there was a little freak out on my part.  I've never had a tick, and the news around here is that deer ticks with Lyme disease are becoming more prevalent in these parts.  Nothing like the thought of a little Lyme to make the morning exciting!

The Boy got the tick out, and we quickly sent it to a boozy death by drowning it in alcohol.  The bite immediately looked like a bulls' eye, so we called the walk-in clinic at the local hospital to see what to do.

Of course, this meant that we spent a chunk of the afternoon at the walk-in clinic.  

I've had a couple of big fears since moving to Boston:
  1. Which one of us will get the first dings on the car/get into a fender bender
  2. Which one of us will have to go to the ER first?
Number two's basically been answered:  Me.  Sure, the walk-in clinic isn't the ER, but it's close enough. It wasn't an awful experience--just a wait, a look at the bite, and a prescription doled out.  The doctor didn't think it was anything to worry about, but he wanted to give me a two-pill dose just to make sure it didn't develop into Lyme (because that would be bad. Just ask novelist Amy Tan).

So far, so good.  I don't really think anything else will happen with this incident, but it does make me think twice about randomly walking in the woods without making sure a tick doesn't have an easy way to burrow in.

Hope your weekends were better!
Your pal,

1 comment:

  1. Bug spray helps. Wear a hat, long sleeves, and tuck your pants into socks or boots. Also know the difference between a wood tick (harmless) and a deer tick (potential Lyme carrier). Don't know about your area, but around WI the wood ticks are more common; I'd never even seen a deer tick until this year. Two family members have had Lyme and recovered nicely, so as long as you're aware of the symptoms and don't take "oh, it couldn't be Lyme" as an answer from a doctor when you're suspicious, you'll be fine.