Opener Water: Only Without the Sharks and WIthout the Water

Lately, Toby and I have had spike in mosquito bites. It seems every morning there are more and more bumps. And they itch. They itch like nothing I have ever experienced before. Every day we wake up with new ones. Last week, Toby had three on his eyelid. This week I have several on my chin. My arms take the worst beating. But I even have one on my palm, now that’s one desperate bastard.

It’s not uncommon for Toby to wake me up slapping himself in the face. I imagine this is because he can hear and I can’t or else I’m sure I’d be slapping myself in the face as well. The beasts swarm around him, and he can HEAR them circling. He knows there coming to drink his blood and so his arms start to flail.




And I’m awake. And it’s 3 in the morning. And my husband is slapping himself again. It doesn’t help our already inexplicable inability to sleep between the hours of 3 and 5 a.m.

Last night, at around 3 a.m., the natives became restless again. I woke up scratching my arms. I had been scratching for a long while, because 3 of my 15 new bites were already reaching new volcanic heights. Toby was awake as well, slapping himself silly. We lay there bitching. We lay there helpless.

bzzzzz bzZZZZZ Bzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Jesus H. Christ! I HATE THIS!

I know, honey. I know. I’m so sorry.

bzzzzz bzZZZZZ Bzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz bzZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzz

I can’t live like this.


bzZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzz ZZZZZZZZZZZZZBzzzzzzz

That’s it!!!! I can’t take it anymore. Turn on the light.

I wasn’t sure what I was going to do. I hadn’t made a plan just yet. I figured I could find and destroy the little bitch even if it was 3 a.m. and he had the upper hand being a miniature vampire and all, living at night and all. Toby flipped on our light as he staggered out of our room and into the bathroom to pee. I looked around at our white walls. And that’s when I saw them.

We didn’t have one mosquito. We didn’t even have 5 or 7. There were AT LEAST 25 mosquitos in FULL VIEW staring back at us, waiting to eat our hands, our heads, our faces. They were EVERYWHERE. I can’t make that any clearer. I have seen less bugs dead on a blue deathlight.

I freaked. I have heard this expression used before, I have even it said it before, but up until last night I didn’t know what “I FREAKED” meant. Last night, I met Freaked. I Freaked out with Freaked. You might say I lost my shit.

Toby came back into the room and I began to point. I was horrified. I wanted to point to Everywhere – because they were Everywhere. But I’m not sure you CAN point to everywhere all at once. So I just pointed.

Toby, look at them all! Look at them! I can’t beleive my eyes!

I’m not sure when it happen, but I was crying. He walked towards me to give me a hug. And then we began to kill them. We spent about 15 or 20 minutes, him with a broom, me with a shoe, killing mosquitos like it was our late night job. Killing mosquitos with watery eyes isn’t easy. As a matter of fact it’s downright impossible. So I guess it’s a good thing there were so many of them, because basically everywhere my shoe landed, a blood splatter formed on the wall below.

We killed and then killed some more. Finally, we were both exhausted and I didn’t see any in sight. Toby laid back down realizing in only a few short hours he’d have to leave for work. I was spent and totally itchy.

I wanted to go home.

Today, I’m feeling a little bit better. Even though we have screens, we closed the window in our bedroom to avoid any future uprisings. What I don’t understand is they’re only in OUR room and they’re ONLY eating us. Our guests don’t seem to get bitten, so I imagine they don’t venture beyond our four walls very often. And that’s pretty terrifying. Come to think of it, I can’t tell you how terrifying this experience was or has been. I know I might sound silly, I might sound like I’m over-reacting, but seeing dozens of mosquitos dotting the walls surrounding your once sleeping head is like something out of a Stephen King short story.

Didn’t a little girl die this way?

I’d like to end this post by mentioning just how far I’ve come along the road towards accepting life here in San Francisco. Say this had happen during the dark days I would have packed my bags and booked a flight for home. I was so fragile back then – my mental state – surely these little beasts would have driven me out of my home.

Maybe back then I was just looking for an excuse all along.

When we first moved here, people told me that there are no bugs in San Francisco. Some said that’s why there are no screens. (We do have screens). A few others said that it DOES rain from time to time and that the weather “isn’t always like this”. Other people told us to be very careful about the mosquitos. Some say it will be nice this September, some say it will rain. Still others say it will stay very much the same. I know that people are being nice and offer up help and suggestions in order to make our stay here a better one, so I am not for a second complaining about the knowledge we have been given. But I do get conflicting San Francisco reports regularly. And for a while I was putting them all together and trying to sort them out using my very own logic and history. But I give the hell up. I surrender. I have found that in San Francisco there isn’t much I’d consider to be predictable except for the fog and my inability to find a decent job.

I guess you could say I believe in the fog.


  1. It could be worse. Your room could have been infested with sea lions. Those bastards have nasty bites.


  2. Oh my god, can you imagine? So cute. this guy from the video? Imagine waking up to him.




  4. Baby, I love it when you talk sea lion.


  5. bug spray, baby. its the only way. your story brought back memories, out here in the east bay (where it is currently only a mild 89 deg.) we close the windows and crank up the AC.

    the mosquitos only really happen when the wind dies though, and it doesnt usually last long.

    bug spray! trust me, its hot.


  6. Chele, LBI was like that too. Couldn’t walk out the door. Also In Canada they were waiting for my sisters and me at the screen door. We would open it, run in and spray. Didn’t get much sleep. They are everywhere but here. :)

    Funny they didn’t bother us when we were at your place. Of course, it was windy when we visited.


  7. We gave away our AC when we moved out here. :[ And I am not buying another one until we either buy a house and I NEVER have to move again, or we’re rich and we can continue to give them away. :] I just visited the hardware store in Noe. The guy said to me, “Yeah, they’re really vicious here. And there’s nothing you can buy for indoor use except for sandlewood incense.” I’m going to have to buy incense? Bummer. (note the sarcasm I love nice smelly things.)


  8. I had something like that happen when I was little. I didn’t have a screen, my light was on, it was hot out, and when I came to go to bed, my bed was covered with several hundred bugs. I don’t remember if I was freaked out by it or not, but I refuse to sleep naked.


  9. You guys are all probably like “dude, you’re a huge wimp.” I guess, had it been mid-day, I’d have handled it much better than I actually did. For example, some people wake up with mice or roaches. Thankfully, we only have the blood-sucking variety of pests.


  10. why not get a mosquito netting for the bed, like you’re staying in some tropical local in the 19th century? kind of like a merchant ivory flick?


  11. Like in that ad for Expedia or I have always sort of been intrigued by those things but we live with something called “Tucker” you may have heard about the famous “Tucker” that net wouldn’t stand a chance. But I have to admit, we did discuss purchasing one today. :]


  12. Nothing is worse than trying to sleep when you have these annoying bugs flying about….at lease you were able to see them. I have had it when you can hear them and then when you turn on the light they magically disappear, only to reappear when the light goes off again! Where the nums any help at all getting rid of them?


  13. i sleep on a bed with on of those nets the other night. it was ok. My friend lives in a little cabin thing on a mountain in malibu and the bastards are everywhere.
    and good thing about the AC though, it slows their metabolism and they drop to the floor (if it’s really cold) my brother left the kitchen door open once in the summer with a florescent light on and they poured in, this was St. louis mind you, river city, i’m sure you can imagine the mosquitoes there. Anyway, i cranked the AC all the way down and left for a few hours, then came home and swept them off the floor. yay science class!


  14. For real? They do that? They just fall to the floor like that? I HATE air conditioning, but if it kills these bastards, I’ll buy two. Holy crap.


  15. I just remembered … when I was in Venice the mosquitos were outrageous. Same thing as this post, my gf and I woke up in the middle of the night to discover the room completely infested with the little Italian bloodsuckers. And there were no screens on the window or AC … that’s what you get for staying in cheap pensiones (but hey, we were young and poor and beautiful and backacking through Europe … so we didn’t really complain).


  16. moskitos, summer of ‘98, st. paul, minnesota..horrible! that’s when i stopped using anything scented like deodorant, lotion, shampoo or even laundry soap. i probably didn’t smell all that nice, but THEY LEFT ME ALONE ‘cause all the other people around me smelled so much more appealing..HA!

    PS: i’m back to using scented everything ‘cause i love scented stuff and i’m back in gemany and i like to smell nice. since we didn’t have a summer AT ALL this year – no worries about moskitos.. but i can feel your pain!


  17. I have no job. I could totally afford to go stinky. I stopped shaving, so why not buy into the full hippie sensation. Indeed.

    We have gone two nights now without being bitten. Perhaps we killed them all. I’m hoping. No spray. No incense even. Just good old fashion smackdown killing.


  18. i’m all itchy now,


  19. Smackdown, yo! You and Toby totally ruled on those vicious beasts. I was gonna suggest netting and spray and sandalwood and AC but it’s all been said so let me just say, of COURSE you freaked out. Anyone who did not FREAK OUT under those circumstances is either a) still in post-operative rehab from their lobotomy or b)born and raised in the Brazilian rainforest or c)an alien. I’m sorry it is has been such a rough adjustment to San Francisco. I trust that means it can only get better. Job seeking is truly the worst time in life—I hope you find the perfect job soon soon soon.


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