4.11.2012

I didn't think of ticks.

I haven't posted in a while, but I've been busy being awesome and accomplishing things.  That's right -- for those of you who don't already know, I have completed two items on my list of 12 For 2012:

3. Live off the land

This means anything from a simple weekend camping trip to a full-on week-long Survivorman-style adventure. I know that my mom is yelling at her monitor right now -- "You CAN'T do that. I am NOT going to let you. You're going to get hurt!! Or... or a bear might eat you!! What if you get hurt and can't move?!?! What if you get AUDITED?!?!?!"


David and I went camping with some friends this weekend... it was more along the lines of "simple weekend camping trip" that I mentioned above than gutting a fish and eating it raw, but I did cook our meals over a campfire -- which I was awesome at -- and I did sleep on the ground.  Uh, the first night.  Then the next morning, my shoulders and hips hurt so bad and I was so cold from that night (we were under a freeze warning) that I made an emergency run to Walmart and bought an air mattress.  Other than that, it was very much a weekend of tent, campfire, cooking over a flame, pissing outdoors, sleeping bag, beef jerky, minimal bear attacks, reading books.  Even if the book was downloaded onto David's iPad. 

The good thing about this time of year is that there are hardly any bugs out yet.  Some, however, reared their ugly heads... which brings me to my next item:

11. Kill a fucking huge spider

David usually does the spider-killing. I help by running into another room, screaming, and getting hives. In 2010, he killed a pregnant black widow on the front porch, and the stain from that horrifying night is still there on the concrete. But what if he's not at home someday, and I find a 50 pound spider in the living room eating the kittehs? I have to be calm enough to kill it with a revolver.

I was minding my own business, reading The Hunger Games out loud to my companions from David's iPad.  It was night time, probably about 11 p.m., and my legs were warming by the fire.  We'd just had an excellent dinner (if I do say so myself... and I'd say it again, heyoooo) of steaks, corn on the cob, roasted potatoes, and spicy green beans.  I had a tasty and refreshing Sprite by my side.  The scene was a cozy one.  I was comfortable... fed, warm, happy.  Unguarded.  That's when they know to come.
 
The fact that I am left-handed may have saved my life.  Spiders are trained to attack the right side of humans, knowing that it would incapacitate the majority of even the strongest men.  But I, being the freak of nature I am, held onto the iPad with my left hand; my right hand was absently wrapped around my Sprite bottle, which was in the sole cupholder of my blatantly biased-against-lefties chair.  I was right in the middle of a paragraph when I spotted the evil spidery soldier, wandering aimlessly up the right side of the iPad (probably wondering, "Where the fuck is the arm?  I should've hit the radial artery by now.").  And that yellow bastard was huge.  I did what any strong, independent woman would do, which was utter a "unnnnnhnhnnnnnnEW EW EWWWWWWW" and shake the iPad violently. 
 
The little fucker landed on David's shoe, and I stomped the living shit out of it.  David yelling out, "Um, OW, that was my foot" was the least of my concerns as I smeared the spider's guts through the dirt on the ground. 
 
In times like these, most people would feel triumphant -- gloat, strut around victoriously, brag to friends.  But not I.  I stayed on lookout.  At least an hour after the failed attempt on my life, we hadn't resumed reading the book.  I was too busy being vigilant.  With a flashlight, I inspected every inch of the campsite.  I chainsmoked five cigarettes.  I made my companions check my clothes and hair.  No other spiders were found; they probably aborted their planned battle when they saw their buddy's mangled corpse in the dirt near the fire.  They weren't anticipating the likes of me to contend with.
 
I learned my lesson about being unguarded in the wild.  It's a scary place. 
 
Then the day after we returned home, I found a tick in my clothes.  A freaking tick.  Those are arachnids too, right?  I killed that little bastard too.

This was my first time camping, believe it or not.  Anyone else have any good camping stories?