If it’s the month of May, you can count on me spending time Googling mosquito-repellents. You see, I am the queen of mosquito bites. You’ve seen the illustrations of Pigpen with his cloud of dirt—imagine me in the place in of Pigpen and then imagine a cloud of mosquitoes instead of dirt. That is what my summers are like. The bugs bite me on the way out to the mailbox.
Every year I try some new remedy that doesn’t include slathering myself in DEET. I don’t mind the DEET if I’m going to spend the day outside, but going to the mailbox ought not to necessitate a frosting of sticky, poisonous goo. I’ve tried vitamin B—tons of bites. I’ve tried eucalyptus oil—I could get used to smelling like the woods on a rainy day, but it didn’t discourage the bites at all.
I’ve heard that oscillating fans keep the beasties away, but it’s hard to carry my own personal oscillating fan on the way to the mailbox. I need a different method.
I’ve been reading the “natural” websites. They recommend misting yourself with vodka. Yes, you read that right. Misting your skin with vodka. Apparently, mosquitoes don’t like smell of vodka. (I thought that vodka was odorless, but whatever.) The only problem that I can foresee is that my mailman might come to the door one day and spy my spray-bottle of vodka. He’d ask one of my boys (our mailman is extremely nosey), “What’s in that there bottle?” And, I have no doubt, my son would say, “Oh, my mom mists herself with vodka every time she goes outside—it keeps the mosquitoes away.” To which, the mailman, who is also a gossip, would think, “Yeah, right.” Before I knew it, everyone would hear about my “vodka repellent” and they’d think I was imbibing some odd mixed drink from New England…maybe I need to look into alternative ways of dealing with my mosquito issues. I bought a bat house; I should get Calvin to hang it, soon.