The Great Cul De Sac Battle of 2020

This time it’s personal.

Sting me once, shame on you.

Sting me twenty-five times, and I’m getting the biggest can of Raid I can find…

This time of year, I mow the lawn about once a week.  The hour or so I spend out there is both enervating and relaxing.  I work up an honest sweat, get some terrific exercise, and see immediate results of my labor.

Honestly, it’s treasured me-time.

About six weeks ago I was happily, innocently cutting the grass.  I was in our side yard, serenely pushing Hondo, our self-propelled, self-mulching mower.  Suddenly, I felt a burning sensation on my leg, similar to the feeling of being burned by a cigarette. 

I beg to differ, they left plenty of stingers.

Then before I knew it another, and another.  Then I saw wasps before being stung twice more.

I jumped around like a lunatic for a minute, swiping at already departed beasts and ran inside the house.  Petey helped me make sure they were all gone, I took a couple of pain relievers, and went back out and finished the yard.

I assumed they had built a nest on the house, under a bit of siding and vowed to be careful when mowing in the vicinity or turning on the hose, which was located there.

A week later I was again in the area cutting the grass and taking great care to give the house in that space a wide berth.  I mowed the strip abutting the flower bed with a wary eye toward the wall.

All of a sudden my world exploded.  The wasps were everywhere.  They bit exposed flesh and then dove under my clothing and began stinging.  Then they crawled under my ankle socks and into my sneakers to bite my feet.

My dancing from the week before looked like the movement of a merry-go-round horse compared to the rabid racehorse gyrations I was doing in my yard.  My language was so colorful there were colors unseen on the human spectrum (which was especially embarrassing because my neighbor,  a minister, was sitting on her front porch with visitors).

I ran inside again, and again Petey helped me both remove wasps and the many stingers their compatriots had left behind. 

In all, we counted twenty-five stings; my right elbow being the recipient of five separate and distinct attacks.  I took a couple of pain relievers along with a couple benadryl tablets to fight the vemon that was now coursing through my veins.


I.went.out.and.finished.mowing.  Looking back, it was the most badass moment of my life. 

And, I’d always thought I was a big baby.

RBG: The reigning queen of badass, now and forever.

I discovered later that the wasps were not in a nest on the house, but yellow jackets that live underground.  Hondo and I had both run over their front door.

Later that night I hurt everywhere and was red, hot, and puffy.  The next day the pain was gone and I was itchy.  The following day my lips began to tingle.  Then they began to swell.

Yup, that’s me…

Well, the top lip swelled.  I looked like a Simpson character sporting one of their extreme overbites.  The doctor gave me steroids to speed the poison out of my system and I spent the next week in a benadryl-induced fog.

I now have an Epi-pen in case of another attack and a resulting dangerous reaction.

If this was a comic book I’d end up with a tiny waist, a cute, sexy yellow and black costume, the power of flight and a lethal sting.    

But I get a fat lip and probable fatal allergy to future wasp stings.

Ah, 2020, thou art the harshest of harsh mistresses.

Thanks for your time.

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