Might I insert a point here? Back in the day, our parents' property had a full range of nature. And our exposure to everything from deer to polliwogs was common. While our playful adventures led us in and out of the woods and weeds, my brothers fell into all kinds of mayhem. I pride myself that I, on no such occasion, let nature get the best of me. This means not a bee sting or a snake bite or anything in between.
Which is why I relate the following ordeal with just a touch of a frowny face.
I am putting in serious mileage so 50 minutes into our run, I realize we are about due for the toddler’s potty break. It is not like the path runs through caves and caverns or other private spots; this is a path visible from many houses and cars as well as littered with other runners, walkers, cyclists. Potty break will demand some cleverness since I need to go as well.
During my stake out for an appropriate hiding spot, I opt to turn down a long driveway. Well hello building crew! I turn back. I am not an outdoor facilities kind of girl as I have previously pointed out but it will take a minimum of 50 minutes to return to the car so I set my preferences aside. I finally see a brief stretch of road that goes far below the path. It is intended for horses but I am game. I scurry MiniMac down this grass-strewn road and get him to close to the bushes. As I have my eagle eye on him, I also scurry, drop, and go myself.
And since I am wearing my beloved Nikes with built in iPod mileage tracker, I give a wider stance than Larry Craig to ensure not a single droplet hits my shoes. You also know how I feel about pee on my shoes! And while I certainly gave a cursory glance to my immediate surroundings to ensure the area free of snakes or slugs, I did not do a full SWAT team recon. I feel a little poke in the side of my biscuit and assume I overlooked a small stick. I hurry, pick up the munchkin, and return to the path.
Within a few seconds, I get a strange feeling. The reason? At first, I was not certain. Give it a minute and all the mystery was solved. How? Because the entire left side of my arse is basically ON FIRE. I stop and take a peek. My tail end is covered in welts. Uh-oh. I know those welts. OMG I sat on STINGING NETTLES.
OUCH. And son of a *&$%*.
Stinging nettles are a perennial flowering plant with stinging hairs all over the leaves and stems. And in my fervor to hurry, I crouched near a plant. Are you ________ kidding me? Do you know what stinging nettles feel like? Stick your ass in hot lava. Now you know. I am almost 5 miles to the car. Fine. I will run with a stinging, burned biscuit. Grimacing all the time, it felt like the last 5 miles felt like the equivalent of 50.
I get to the car and worsen my situation when I am done, load up the SUV, and burn my tush further on the very hot front seat of the car. EGADS.
I get home and ask my Mom is she remembers stinging nettles. She looks at me like I asked if she remembers evergreen trees. Of course she remembers. I also ask her if she remembers I never ONCE had a case of welts from stinging nettles. She immediately becomes concerned for her grandson. I confirm he is welt free, I on the other hand had a bit of a run in and will tell her about it if she assures me she will not laugh. She assures me. She laughs anyway. She retrieves some Aloe Vera spray. Ta da! I spray it liberally. Within 1 minute, the entire left side of my arse is f-r-o-z-e-n. BRRRRRRRRR. I grab the bottle and read closely: Aloe Vera. With LIDOCAINE.
Are you further ____ kidding me? My fault for not reading. And yes, freezing should feel better than burning. But no, in fact, it does not. My Mom, as an olive branch for laughing at my expense, offers a cold drink. We take lemonade and go sit on her back porch. MiniMac is busy watering her giant flowers and mint (and the fence) with her garden hose. He busies himself as well by flipping the dial between the six settings. I go help him adjust the setting to power stream and as I turn, he does something he has never done: points the hose at my retreating back and pulls the trigger. Full stream ahead! Unfortunately, he missed my back but did hit just below my back. My burning/stinging/frozen tush. The target for a kung-fu like stream of water. At that point, my arse was about to develop a voice like Tony Soprano and say SOMEONE BETTER GIVE ME A BREAK.
At that point, since all of this occured in the SAME DAY, I had enough. And so had my arse. Literally.
PS: No amount of wine consumption relieves stinging nettles.