By: actual , 12:52 AM GMT on August 13, 2008
The marshes are drying up... the chiggers are out in force, and the poison oak is doing quite well. Too well, in fact, for my taste!
I suppose I've another two weeks or so to go before my current combination of chiggers and poison oak rashes are gone.
Knowing the chiggers were out there, I followed my standard procedure for avoiding being chigger bait. I used insect repellent. I jumped into a warm shower as soon as I got home from my photo shoot and scrubbed myself from stem to stern with a soapy washcloth.
Well, that usually works if it's only a chigger issue.
Unfortunately, it's exactly the wrong thing to do if you've gotten poison oak and don't know it, since it just spreads your poison oak around. From stem to stern, in fact.
Gee, way to make a girl feel pretty!
I'd been along deer trails, near areas of poison oak, but I never came close to touching the plant. I thought that because I recognized and avoided it I could avoid a rash from it.
I hadn't realized that the deer would romp through the stuff, anointing all their trails with the urushiol from the poison oak. Of course, it doesn't affect them at all... how fair is that?
In the meantime, I'm staying out of the marshes, sticking to the trails and scratching when I think nobody's looking ;)...
The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.