Every so often I like to sit my daughter down and
"When you're young and searching for someone to spend the rest of your life with," I began "you have certain criteria that you judge potential partners by: like whether they're kind, and considerate, whether they respect you, perhaps, *cough* even whether they're good looking may be a factor. However," I continued "in retrospect I would have to say that there are other more practical elements that you need to take into consideration. Like, for example, do you think they'll be up to the task of picking maggots out of your back?"
I mentioned this because Saturday night I asked my husband to check out what felt like a mosquito bite on my back. "Just want to make sure it's not a spider laying eggs in my back! Hahaha!" I said, laughing jovially. He very dutifully poked at my back. And then he turned on all the lights and lamps. Then he went and got his headlamp and a pair of tweezers.
"I'm sure it's nothing" he said. "Oh wait...it just moved..."
He was quiet then.
In the meantime I dragged the laptop across the bed and started googling "mango flies".
Mango/putzi/tumba, the name varies but the MO is the same. Found in subtropical regions, the flies lay their eggs in damp washing in the hope that some walking host will come by and take the eggs home with them. The best way to avoid become a parasite home is to iron or tumble dry all washing. When I lived in Zimbabwe I used to do this religiously, but for some reason, since we've been here I have never given it a thought. And for two and a half years it hasn't been a problem - until now.
Fortunately I am pleased to say that I only had one tenant. And my husband, bless him, did a sterling job getting it out.* Given the horror stories I've been hearing over the last few days, I think I got off lightly.
It does, however, bring a whole new meaning to the concept of 'letting things get under your skin'...
*For the record I was stoic throughout the extraction. Admittedly I have had a few nightmares since...but otherwise it's all good.
Photo credit: SweetCrisis