An awful buzz in the Everglades…

It was almost a year ago that Tom and I set out for the first “whole-week” vacation I had ever taken.

We were headed for the West Coast of Florida–beautiful Naples.  We had reservations at a lovely, single-story condo, with pool and Jacuzzi, not far from downtown and the beach.

We really didn’t have much of an agenda, just relaxing and seeing some sights.  My Dad had told us of a park in the Everglades to visit.  So we made a mental note to check it out.

In the meantime, we did manage to take a tour of the Thomas Edison-Henry Ford compounds and saw the amazing and immense “walking” Banyan tree that had spread across acres and acres of the property.  We walked the grounds that had plant species brought in from throughout the world.

One of the most awe-inspiring experiences I’ve ever had occurred one late afternoon as Tom and I walked along the beach.  As we looked along the shoreline–I am always looking for shells and other treasures–Tom, who had stepped out into the sparkling, clear water of the Gulf, suddenly pointed out a large, six-legged starfish, and then another and another!  There were thousands of starfish just a few feet from the edge of the beach.  We walked on and on, and there were more and more starfish.  We were stunned and thrilled to witness such an incredible scene.  And we saw Brown Pelicans perched by the dozens in the Pine trees that lined up along the dunes “yakking” loudly.

Another day on the beach, we came upon hundreds and hundreds of stingrays!  The tips of their small “wings” broke the water as they swam along.  We stopped and spoke to a local woman who said she has walked the beach for years and she had never seen anything like it.

Wow!  What a show!

But our singularly most memorable day was when we went to explore that park my Dad had mentioned.  I had never been to the Everglades.  I was excited at the prospect of what I might find.

So we took off and were soon nearing our destination.  We came upon some water that ran alongside the highway with a gravelly, rocky beach and even an inviting picnic table.  I suggested we pull over and walk down to the water.  Sure, it would be fun.

We got out of the car, and Tom picked his way carefully over the sharp, jutting rocks to the edge of the water; I was not far behind.

Suddenly, there was a loud, buzzing sound.  I looked around frantically and then began to slap myself.  MOSQUITOES!  They surrounded us with a vengeful lust for blood covering us with their massive numbers.  I’m sure they took delight in the two imbeciles who had walked straight into their personal dining hall!

We ran to the car for safe haven.  To our horror–and I mean horror–we found that the inside of the car was thick with zillions of tiny, blood-thirsty vampires!  We had left the windows open!  We had no choice and did the only thing we could.  We jumped in the car with all the windows rolled down, then took off, blasting down the highway as fast as we could to blow the mosquitoes out, the two of us slapping and wriggling as we went.

Poor Tom, with both hands on the wheel and eyes on the road, got bit the worst.  Finally, after the one hour ride back to our condo, the mosquitoes were almost gone.  To this day I cringe when I hear that telltale buzz.

I do look back on my vacation to Naples as magical, but, as I’ve told Tom, the only way I will ever return to the Everglades is the day it snows!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A bowl of shells and other sea life that I brought back from our trip.  I love to look at them and remember those days.

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37 Comments

  1. Fuzzy Bruce

     /  August 24, 2010

    I can relate to the mosquitoes, they are just as bad on the eastern side of the Everglades! We have a technigue that’s commonly called the Flamingo flush to clear the swamp angels (mosquitoes) out of the car. We run five over the speed limit with all the windows down and open the doors a few inches, too.

    Maybe next trip down, if you would be willing to canoe or kayak, the scenery is awsome and the swamp angels stay closer to shore. Don’t forget the bug juice for the launch.

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    • Wow, who would think there’s an actual name for blasting mosquitoes (swamp angels) out of a car! I had no idea. Well, common sense told us to unroll all the windows and GO–but didn’t think of opening the doors too.

      I can see how canoeing or kayaking would be a great way to see the sights there–but do I have the guts to return? Yikes! But of course, you did say the little buggers stay closer to shore, right where we were so mercilessly attacked.

      Thanks, Fuzzy Bruce, for your comment.

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  2. dearest gayle,
    i loved that name “swamp angel” for those blood sucking vampires. 🙂 its a fantastic name and i think i am going to share it with everyone.

    loved the beach part of the story and the swamp angel part was horrible. as a dwelller of a swampy place i can relate.

    lots of love.

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  3. Dearest Trisha,
    I agree, “swamp angel” is a great name for mosquitoes. I’m going to share it too.

    I’m sure you do have your share of these little vampires too–they love the heat and swampiness of both our climates.
    with love,
    Gayle

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  4. dearest gayle,

    any one who has been showered with the blood sucking kisses of these angels will love this name.

    they rule our state 🙂

    lots of love.

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  5. Dearest Trisha,
    They rule ours too.

    Itch, itch, scratch, scratch… 😦
    with love,
    Gayle

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  6. dearest gayle,
    this is one creature i dont want in my vicinity. they are horrible. 🙂
    lots of love.

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  7. Dearest Trisha,
    You can always expect that they will show up after dark on warm, muggy summer nights. That’s when I will head indoors to escape them–they are horrible.
    with love,
    Gayle

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  8. dearest gayle,
    here they are 365 days phenomenon. Especially outdoors. Only their number varies. and one of them is enough to drive you nuts if you are caught with it in your room when you are trying to do something like snoozing or sleeping. 🙂

    i still remember when i first shifted to burdwan, that was the time when the market was not filled up with mosquito repellants, the only weapon was mosquito nets. and one of the most painful experience is when you wake up in the middle of night with a handful of them inside your net. half of your mind will wish that they disappear, the other half will tell you to get up, switch on the light and kill them individually or else say good bye to sleep.

    🙂
    lots of love.

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  9. Dearest Trisha,
    We aren’t bothered by them too bad in the cooler months. And they don’t seem to want to come out in the full sun of the day. They lurk in the shade during the day and come out in full force in the evening.

    I have had the experience more than once where one will get in the house at night and torment you to know end until you get up and kill the little beast. That little high-pitched “whine” will drive you crazy! Not to mention the bites. It’s impossible to sleep with a “swamp angel”!

    with love,
    Gayle

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  10. dearest gayle,
    your very way of saying says it all. you have suffered like we bengalis do. 🙂 that high pitched whine can drive you crazy if you are trying to do something with concentration, and they somehow can feel when both of your hands are occupied, dont they?

    little imps.

    lots of love.

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  11. Dearest Trisha,
    Yes! They have a sense when both hands are occupied and you’re unable to swat!

    Pure torture!
    with love,
    Gayle

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  12. dearest gayle,
    its quite thought provoking, is not it? if they can feel it or thats the only time we dont swat them 🙂
    lots of love.

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  13. We may never know… 🙂

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  14. dearest gayle,
    you can never tell, may be animal behaviorologists may someday experiment on them and tell us the truth. 🙂
    i love to read small news about animal kingdom.
    lots of love.

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  15. Dearest Trisha,
    I’m sure there’s some scientist somewhere studying this phenomena.
    I also am very curious about interesting facts about nature.
    with love,
    Gayle

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  16. dearest gayle,
    yes i too am curious to know if mosquitos can feel/observe that we wont be able to swat them.
    lots of love.

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  17. Trisha, did you have trouble leaving messages here for me today? I’m having some difficulty. When I click in the comment box to start typing, the cursor won’t show up and then I was taken out of this site to my email–I had to keep coming back here to finish my writing. Odd isn’t it?

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  18. when you are logged in into your account and try to post comment it always disturbs. thats why you must have noted that i never comment from inside my blog. i first sign out, close it and then open the blogs and comment.

    i did not faced any problem in commenting.

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  19. Gayle

     /  September 10, 2010

    OK. I left myself un-logged in this morning and am now commenting and it’s working fine. I had not had that problem, even while logged-in before. I’ll do it this way. Thanks.

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  20. i have learnt these tricks when i was using that sleepy net service provider, how to finish your online jobs quickly. 🙂

    it works lot faster.

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  21. Dearest Trisha,
    Thanks for your help. 🙂

    Is there something I could do to get people to see my blogs? Does it just take awhile when you’re new?
    Love,
    Gayle

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  22. become a member of our group. start participating in jingle’s stuffs. the people of this group are fantastic and very friendly.

    by the way, i have added your name in one of my posts and have mentioned your blog in a nomination list, hope you dont mind it:
    http://mydomainpvt.wordpress.com/2010/09/16/friends-4ever/

    I found my friends only bec of jingle, before her soulbro and gg kept me company. Only two readers for more than one year, then a marvelous being started visiting rahim, jingle followed and now i feel hours for my blogs and on blogs.

    join our group. start with jingle, try to participate her rally for poets (write one poem a week on thursdays, you know writing poem is not that tough), visit 18 poets from her list thats all.

    will be glad to see you there.

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  23. Trisha, you are the best friend. Thank you so much for your kindest testimony and link on behalf of me. I don’t mind at all–you are so generous.

    I have already gone over there and agreed to Jingle’s terms of use. I had written a poem just the other day and will post it and use it as my first entry. I’m not so sure that poem writing is as easy as you say–but I’ll give it a try.

    See you over there. 🙂

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  24. The poem you wrote is beautiful. Its full of hope and optimism.
    I know you will like the people here, they are awesome just like you.

    🙂

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  25. once a week, only on thursdays, that will be enough. on other days you can continue with your prose.

    just yesterday i was reading a blog, in that the person have wrote that he was encouraged by his friends to write a poem, but he will rather stick to the prose.

    believe me, his poem was very good. i liked it.

    Like

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  26. Thanks for your belief in me and your unwavering encouragement, Trisha. It means a lot to me.

    I must admit it was scary to awaken to so many emails Friday morning! But I’m sure I’ll get used to it shortly. Everyone who commented were very nice and positive. It was a great experience for me.

    Like

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  27. thats the thing i love about this group. they are so outstanding writers yet they dont look down upon the works of others.

    they are the true wise people. humilility comes with wisdom.

    Like

    Reply
  28. I agree, there are many very talented writers but everyone seems to have such a group support for one another. I have felt very welcomed–the humility is a beautiful addition!

    And congratulations for the awards you won and the great job of writing!

    Like

    Reply
  29. thats the thing which makes me adore this group. just like intent people these people too are full of sweetness and humillity.

    they are so talented yet they are as soft as petals of a flower.

    Like

    Reply
  30. Talent and humility–what a great combination! You can’t beat it. 🙂

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  31. so very true.

    Like

    Reply
  32. Oh my, I guess misquitoes make sense in that area. I can picture escape convicts (a la old movies) getten bitten as they try to make their way out of the everglades.

    Brown Pelicans: they got hit pretty bad by the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

    Nice post, Gayle. Engaging and well written. Thanks!

    Like

    Reply
  33. What a surprise! No one else has read this since I first posted it when I started this blog, Jamie.

    Yes, those poor pelicans got injured by the spill but I wonder how the other sea life fared too.

    I’m so glad you were engaged by my writing–thanks very much.

    Like

    Reply
  34. jgavinallan

     /  May 30, 2011

    Gayle;

    Now…do you want to talk about insects?
    Well…I got a few stories…lol

    love and hugs
    Jaye

    Like

    Reply
    • Hi Jaye! Thanks for reading this. Yes, I do want to talk insects and would love to hear your stories!

      Was out with family today–got back late and was trying to catch up with responding to some comments. Stopped awhile to play Scrabble online! : )

      Love and hugs,
      Gayle

      Like

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