Saturday, November 24, 2012

Attacked by Fire Ants! and Other Mundane Things

Gulf Shores, AL      High:  73    Low:   44

When we came to Gulf State Park, we asked a neighbor who had been there awhile, if they had any trouble with fire ants. He said, no, but that's because people on the site previously were apparently treating the area for them. He recommended a granular product by Ortho, said you could get it at Walmart very inexpensively and so we did. We watched for them, saw some activity on our site, sprinkled the granules, and no further problems since we've been here.

But TODAY, Sparky headed out on some errands and stopped by the dumpsters to unload the trash. She stepped out of the car, stood by the dumpsters, opening up the lid. All of a sudden, her feet were on FIRE, and she means burning hot-- hot, hot, stinging hot, as in fire ants attacking her sandaled feet hot! She started jumping up and down, hollerin' "Oh, SHIT! Shit, SHIT!" Sorry, when Sparky is under duress, she cusses. She cussed when her firstborn came into the world, she cusses when hitting her hand with a hammer, when burning herself with a glue gun, when somebody hits her car or she hits something with it, (Uh, Sparky, do you have something you want to tell me?) Uh, that dent happened before I met you, sweetie....and when fire ants attack. And really, Sparky never cusses other than dire situations like that. (She does not cuss, I can vouch for that, says E. I have NEVER heard her cuss!) Well, she was jumping up and down, swatting at her feet, the sandals came flying off first one, then the other, and she was acting like a madwoman. Luckily, no one else was around. It probably looked rather comical, Sparky dancing around, hopping first on one foot, then the other. You know how when you hear about kids having head lice or your own kids get them you start scratching your head immediately because it itches? For the next 15 minutes, Sparky was slapping her feet, slapping her arms, she felt like the ants had been all over her arms and legs instead of just her feet and still were!  Thank heavens only a couple of bites, but man, they STING!

On to other mundane things.....How about Sparky thinking about joining a "polar bear club"? You know those guys and gals who take a plunge in a lake in the dead of winter? Well, today, Sparky FINALLY took the plunge and went for a swim in the UNHEATED Gulf State Park pool, which was an official 60 degrees but felt like about 50. How cold was it? It was so cold that Sparky's teeth went numb. Sparky had to run around in the shallow end of the pool to warm up her body enough to swim a few laps. She lasted about four laps and then had to get out, teeth chattering, feet and toes numb. They are closing the pool tomorrow. But hey--Sparky's ready to join the Polar Bear Club---NOT! No photos to document, ya wouldn't want to see Sparky in a bathing suit anyway. Eldo was back at the rig.

Earlier today a gentleman with the most charming southern accent stopped by to chat with Eldy. Hello, Roger Davis! He and Eldy chatted about all kinds of cool places to go in northern Georgia and North Carolina where the ruby mines are...He had done some "mining" on his travels and found several rubies of multiple carats. Sparky is ready to go gem mining! Then again, he probably just got lucky....Eldo learned a lot more about places we haven't seen in the southeast. We really enjoyed chatting with him, he was really funny and charming. Sparky was sorry to miss the conversation, but had to leave to run some errands.

Off to the Blue Girl Beading Company on E. 2nd St. in Gulf Shores, to get some beads for pine needle basket decorating and jewelry making...Very nice shop, tremendous selection, LOTS of beautiful, handcrafted jewelry for sale, and cool classes are offered.....

Checked out Tallulah's Treasures in Orange Beach...Sparky just HAD to have a garden crab ornament that wiggles all its appendages at the slightest breeze like it's crawling like mad  (that's her astrological sign, and boy, does it fit! explains E.) and some shells, and a little felted purse. Beautiful place--some items are expensive, like the clothing, but there are LOTS of cute, smaller items that would make great gifts. Wonderful jewelry, artwork, clothing, home decor, seashore items, personal accessories you don't see anywhere else--a little bit of everything!

Finally, off to the Gulf State Pier for a beautiful sunset...almost missed it trying to fill out the form and pay 2.00 a person to go out on the pier.

You are on the honor system after 5:00 PM. It's a 24 hour fishing pier. Sparky saw lots of people head out onto the pier without paying. Tch, tch, tch!

Saw a great blue heron and a pelican have a little spat over fishing rights for leftovers on the pier. Several pelicans waited for fish scraps...
The pelicans and one lone heron walked among the fishermen and sightseers easily, patiently waiting for the opportune time to strike....
It was a beautiful evening...After watching the birds and the sunset, it was time to go home....We'll be seeing you later.......


  1. Don't like those fire ants either, got attacked three years ago in Texas and still have a few scars on my feet, very painfull.

  2. Oh those fire aunts sound terrible. I can't even stand regular ants crawling on me. It does take a while for that crawling feeling to go away even when they are gone. Eewwww

    You definitely get the polar bear prize. You can for sure swim in the 72 degree Florida springs.

  3. Wow - two fire ant attacks this morning in my blog list. Toni at in Yuma,AZ also got attacked. But she didn't do any polar bear swimming. Are you nuts? lol I want my water about 95 degrees. Then I might think about it.

  4. Having been attacked by fire ants, I can sure sympathize! I now only wear sneakers if there is any chance of biting ants or other problems likely to be found at the campsite.

  5. Every time I see an ant, I hope that they are not fire ants! So far so good :)

  6. Those nasty little critters were horrendous the last time we we at the TT Park in Columbus. . .ouch, ouch, ouch. . .I always carry a bag of the Fire Ant Bait. . .so dragged it out and doctored their little mounds.

    I'm sure you have those love little pimples on your legs today. . .yuck!

    Take care Polar Bear,

    ReadyToGoFullTimeRVing Blog

  7. 60 degree water is way too cold for me. When we had our Tampa house, we had a solar heated pool....which I liked at 92-94. That was the perfect temperature!!

  8. Sooo was the freezing cold water used to sooth the fire ant bites? LOL

    Karen and Steve
    (Old Blog Name) RVing: Small House... BIG Backyard
    (New Blog Name) RVing: This Country Is Our Big Backyard