Wednesday, July 28, 2010, we finally got some serious rain. I can't remember the last time our lawn was thoroughly watered by something other than the sprinkler and hose I drag around. It overflowed some gutters and was complete with thunder and lightening. Mike and I sat on the front porch and enjoyed it. Until we wondered how badly the gutters were overflowing at his mom's house. When that happens, it comes DOWN the driveway and into her carport and even the house! So we rushed over there. No damage, and no over flowing gutters over there, thankfully.
Thursday morning when we went walking, we went past the irrigation gutter at the top of our street. It was running orange. Orange, like the color of orange creamsicles. People say we have red hills, but they are wrong. The hills and the dirt that runs off them into the gutters with a hard rain are orange. It was kind of pretty, in a "dirt"y sort of way. But not pretty enough to scoop some up and freeze it into a popsicle. ha. (Gail hates the flavor of orange creamsicles.)
And around the first of July, I noticed a red area on the top of my left shoulder. It was bright red, oval, about 2 inches in diameter. It didn't hurt, wasn't swollen, or itch terribly, but it did feel a little warm to the touch. Of course, after touching it, it DID itch a little more, so I put on hydrocortizone cream for about a week, and it stayed the same. Gail thought it might be getting larger, so we drew a circle around the edge of it one day with a permanent marker so we could track the size. It was STILL very red and just sort of itchy. That just managed to get marker all over my clothes. But the size didn't change significantly. After another week, I got some good ol' home remedy sticky pine gum salve and tried that for a few days and by then it'd been three weeks and it was fading quickly. There was a small-ish bump in the middle where there might have been a bite. So it faded over the next week. It was almost all gone, but I was looking just the other day at the coloring. It was still slightly darker than the surrounding skin, but only very VERY slightly. THEN--it got little bumpies all over it, kind of like heat rash or pimples. And in a BIGGER area--about 5 inches in diameter all over my shoulder! How weird. It's not really itchy, it is not red, it's not hot, it's not dying tissue that Nick keeps trying to scare me with (Really, it's not. it's just his weird sense of humor and love of big words). So, I guess whatever it was that bit me must have had some kind of toxin that my body is struggling to expel. I'm very glad it's not been systemic. Although, perhaps I can blame anything on it...hot flashes? laziness? not wanting to do the dishes? Maybe I CAN milk this for whatever it's worth. In any case, it's been about a month since I first noticed the red spot. Maybe it wasn't a spider. Or maybe....it was... and I'll soon have super powers!