21 May 2010

The Good, The Bad, & the Knitting

We are experiencing the best spring I can remember in years! And a lot of years at that!  The leaves are all out on the trees, apple blossoms are blooming, the magnolia tree has actually lost all its flowers and those most hated of all bugs are here. Blackflies.  Everyone hates blackflies.  This is an excerpt from Wikipedia so you will realize that I am not exaggerating :

  • In the wetter parts of the northern latitudes of North America, including parts of Canada, New England, and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, black fly populations swell from late April to July, becoming a nuisance to humans engaging in common outdoor activities such as gardening, boating, camping, and backpacking. They can also be a significant nuisance in mountainous areas.
  • Black flies are a scourge to livestock in Canada, causing weight loss in cattle and, in some cases, death.

    We live in one of the above mentioned areas, Nova Scotia.  Every year, having usually put in 4 –5 months of hateful winter weather, we eagerly anticipate the spring.  And every year we seem surprised to find the dreaded black fly is back, and usually with a vengeance.  We think maybe it won’t be bad this year. (I mean, give me a break! Who could be that much of a Pollyanna?  Beside me that is.) They make being out doors a serious challenge.  Walking two dogs, each on a leash, and trying to swipe at the horde of blackflies relentlessly surrounding your head and upper body becomes an event worthy of the Olympics.  Once the dogs have done their duty, you rush into the house sweaty, bloodstained and spotted with bites.  Sounds like a lot of fun doesn’t it?  And then there are the poor golfers, out in it for hours at a time. Yuck! Ick!  Just one more really good reason for me NOT to play golf! As for the gardeners, who kneel out there and weed and plant and are wearing their bug jackets which are so unpleasant and uncomfortable, they deserve medals for their perseverance!  We all get to appreciate the results of their efforts with the beautiful gardens!

    So we have learned to take the good with the bad and we are thankful for the windy days, for that blows the little bastards away for a while. And even the rainy days which seems to keep them at bay. But most of all we are just so shocked and pleased that spring has arrived early that we can’t seem to believe that they came with it!  Now all we need are a few really hot spells in the near future and that should kill them offffff!  Yay! 

    A knitting note.  I am coming along really well with the mystery socks and my new cabling without a cable needle technique is just a godsend.  I am just zipping along with them.  I finished Clue 3 for the left foot and now need to do Clue 3 for the right foot and I’ll be caught up.  Clue 4, the final clue, comes out tomorrow.  Sounds like the title to a new action movie doesn’t it?


    lexa said...

    The flies haven't been bad in town yet, but it's so darned windy every day it's keeping them away, I guess. I was out mowing the lawn last night, and there were some around, but it wasn't bad at all. But I agree -- they are SUCH a pain!

    Frieda said...

    Donna , you killed me with the little bastards decription ! Almost splattered the computer screen.

    We also suffer with the aforementioned little bastards here in Quebec at least in the areas north of Montreal . With us the everloving blood sucking mosquito is the insect who can ruin anything you want to do outdoors .

    Have a wonderful long weekend !


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