I killed a scorpion this morning. No…it wasn’t outside where it belongs! It was bold enough to be on the carpet directly in front of my favorite spot on the loveseat. That’s where I sit to read and watch television and nap! Honestly…asking for it. I am a nature lover at heart, but I draw a line in the sand when it comes to critters living inside my home. Yes, I’ve been known to spray and swat and stomp more than a few pests!
Surviving the summer in Oklahoma, which apparently provides the ideal environment for anything with six to eight legs, requires preparation and daily diligence. I am never without insect repellent when I work in the yard. (As a precaution I wash it off when I’m finished with my outside chores.) I am cautious about when and where I work. I especially fear wasps, hornets, and scorpions so I don’t reach into bushes or move old fallen tree limbs without a long tool. I am careful to replenish the water tubs that I leave out for the big critters so we don’t breed the tiny biting ones.
And as if insect attacks weren’t bad enough, Oklahoma should be famous for its snake population! Since we moved to Oklahoma I have been regularly greeted by snakes in our yard and even in our pantry, laundry room, and shower. I stepped on a baby snake once, and then spent a full minute trying to figure out how to safely get off of it!
Summer also means sunburns, barbeque fires, and drownings. A news report this morning emphasized the importance of learning to swim. That may seem odd in a state that is located in the middle of the prairie, but here are some interesting statistics for you:
Oklahoma has 11,611 miles of lake shore line, which is slightly less than the estimated combined general coastline of the Atlantic, Pacific and Arctic Coasts (12,383 miles).
Oklahoma has more lakes created by dams than any other state in the U.S. (200+)
Oklahoma has over sixty natural lakes.
Oklahoma has 78,578 miles of rivers and streams.
There are also an estimated 9,000 commercial and residential swimming pools (as of 2009).
I don’t know about you, but I plan to be extra careful around water, and to stock up this week on sunscreen, insect repellent, and bandages!