Wednesday, November 6, 2013

a survival story

One of the many things I’ve had to adjust to in Thailand are the myriad critters that now populate my world. There are ants that eat your computer, mosquitoes that carry several varieties of death and destruction, flies (usually on the food that you about to buy and consume), stray dogs that roam the streets like gangs, all sorts of birds that I haven’t been able to identify just to name a few. Some of these are less troublesome than others, some I’ve come to appreciate and delight in and some will freak me out forever and ever. Let me share just one story with you right now.

Story #1

The other day I’m out walking in the garden area with my class when one of the girls stops and points up to the top of a post, about 3 feet above my head. There, hovering ominously is the most ginormous moth I’ve ever seen. Anyone who has been a witness to me in the near proximity of a moth of any size will be proud and amazed at how I handled myself. I swallowed the scream that was dying to escape my lips, forced a smile and nodded affirming that it was indeed cool (she was speaking Thai and smiling so I assume that’s what she was saying, for all I know she was playing the same game I was) put her between me and the creature (she’s about a foot and a half tall so the logic of this….well, there isn’t any, but I was ready to sacrifice her completely if it came to it) and quickened my pace considerably. And then walked 10 or so feet out of my way on the return trip in order to not be anywhere near it.

So you’ll better understand just how amazing a feat this was let me explain. (Nope, there is too much. Let me sum up!)

I hate moths. There is not a strong enough word to describe my level of hatred for them. Butterflies are beautiful, peaceful things who are welcome to land on my finger and grace my garden but moths are of the devil. They are skittish, erratic things that flutter manically aiming to hit you continuously with their poisoned wings so they can stun you, crawl into your ears and eat your brains. And yes, I panic as if all the above statements were documented fact when there is one anywhere near me. It is not a pretty sight.

And to further clarify, this was not a tiny thing. No. Not even close. Remember when you were a kid and you’d loop your thumbs together and wiggle your palms/fingers to make a butterfly shadow puppet on the wall? Picture Shaquille O’Neal's monster hands doing the same thing and that is literally the size of the beast I encountered. It was terrifying. I wish I’d had a camera to prove it but let’s be honest, I wouldn’t have gotten close enough to take its picture. (I'm counting on it being the only one of its kind and there being no possibility that I will ever have to experience this again. Please don't burst my bubble.)

So, you see, I am pretty much the bravest person alive. Congratulations in the form of money, honorary doctorates or keys to small kingdoms will be most humbly accepted. 

1 comment:

  1. I would have reacted the same way to most large bugs, especially spiders. ICK!!! You really did exhibit enormous bravery there.