By: Blonde One

The Two Blondes adventure this weekend was eventful in many, many ways but unfortunately there was one element to it that I wish we had not encountered: horse flies! We were plagued by them at almost every point on the journey, it was horrible. I have now got polka dot legs that are probably best hidden from view – they are not what you expect ‘Blonde’ legs to look like at all. It is a very rare occasion when I go out walking without a first aid kit. In fact the only other time I have done it recently was when I got tangled up in brambles and needed antiseptic wipes, tissues, plasters, savlon, etc and all I had was … well … nothing! I spent the vast majority of that walk with blood dripping off my shins – lovely. You would think I had learned my lesson, but no. My excuse this time was that I had taken most of my kit out of my rucksack and put it in various piles on the spare bed ready for Morocco. Blonde Two came to the rescue though and had a bottle of DEET insect repellent … or did she? She looked through her first aid kit several times, convinced that it was there, only to be disappointed! Oh well, we battled on, and were very glad of a cool dip in Crazy Well Pool to soothe the itching.

I have since learned a thing or two about these blasted creatures. They are very similar to vampires:

1. They like to lurk in shadows.

2. They drink blood.

3. They leave the victim in pain and with bite marks!

They are disimilar in many ways too:

1. They do not look like Robert Pattinson.

2. Bram Stoker would not write a book about them.

3. They do not live forever (thankfully).

My extensive research has found out some nasty facts about these pesky things, some of which I think I would rather not know, but since I do know, I feel obliged to share with you!

The reason the bite sites bleed is that they are actually slicing or ripping your skin in order to drink the blood from the wound, they are not biting at all, this also explains the pain felt. It is the female that does the damage (she surely isn’t Blonde), without a blood meal they cannot reproduce. Their usual habitat is in the shade near water and they are most prevalent during summer. They cause pain and itching which can be alleviated (a little) with antihistimine and medi-wipes.

All in all they are nasty little devils that should be avoided at all costs. In future I will try to remember my first aid kit and also wear a long sleeved top and long trousers!

The irony of the day was that as we got back in sight of Blonde Two’s car, she found her DEET cream in her pack that she keeps on the top of her rucksack which is full of things that might be needed in an emergency and can be grabbed quickly!!!!