Bitten

28 Aug

The slivered moon grinned as we crossed the vacant parking lot. The wind tugged softly as I paused to digest the city’s skyline, a swirling silhouette of green, amber and blue.

“Come on,” he beckoned.

Breaking the city’s trance, I followed him into across the street and scaled a cement staircase, where a chorus of trees swayed softly in the night’s breeze. Fountains were all around. Fountain Park it was called. As glimmers of light danced in the streaming water, he grabbed my hand and led me over to an empty bench.

It was absolutely beautiful. And an absolute nightmare. The romantic atmosphere was a mosquito’s heaven. With the worst West Nile outbreak in years haunting the Dallas area, the place made me itch. After showering in a perfume of mosquito spray daily and hiding out indoors as mosquito-killing artillery fell from the sky, I’ve become a bit paranoid.  The aerial spraying was initially scheduled for a Friday night, believe it or not. I’d been enjoying drinks with a long-lost friend before slinking back home for an early night.

“On a Friday night?” my friend squealed in disbelief.

How dare those pesky pint-sized pests ruin our plans for a good night? he argued. 

Few of us took it seriously, at first. I mean, they’re just mosquitoes. They’re named for the Spanish and Portuguese word for “little fly.” But they shouldn’t be underestimated. Mosquitoes topped the Scienceray’s list filled with lions, snakes, bears as the world’s most dangerous animals because of their alarming fatality rates.  I’m certainly no longer take them for granted. 

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