In Which Ursula Does Something Pretty Dumb

We’re back!

I had planned to write about the trip, but A) I’m tired, and B) I just did something sufficiently dumb that I am inspired to write about that instead.

Our trip back was complicated by my having a full blown allergy attack–nearly six hundred miles of snuffling. Rest stop toilet paper is lousy for this, because it is essentially one-ply sandpaper, and thus manages to abrade the nose without absorbing the mucus to any degree. I failed to take a Claritin in time to head off the histamine reaction, at which point it becomes a giant Tic-Tac with drug interaction warnings, so I snorfled my way home, which made for some interesting driving during savage sneezing fits. The linings of my nasal passages are basically raw hamburger by this point.

This will be important later in the story.

So we get home, drop off stuff, soothe the hysterical cat (who just wants to punish us for having left her ALL ALONE for YEARS ON END with NO FOOD, even though my buddy Kathy dropped by and fed and watered and snoogled her.) James went off to get dinner, and I went to check on the wren nest, which hasn’t hatched yet (thankfully, since I still need to get photos.)

While I was out, I noticed that, unsurprisingly, the suet feeder was empty. So I grabbed a cake of suet and dumped it in the feeder, and as luck would have it, a second later I had a dire sneezing fit, nose started dripping madly, and I staggered inside, clutched the Kleenex, and began blowing my nose.

And then wiping my nose.

Bringing my fingers in contact with the lining of my nostrils.

My raw, painful nostrils.

My suety fingers.

Did I mention this great hot pepper squirrel-repellant suet that I use?

Boy howdy. I don’t know if eating the stuff conveys quite the effect of rubbing it on painfully raw flesh, but if so, I feel a little bad for the squirrels.

Making appalled “ungh! ungh!” noises, I rushed into the bathroom and tried to rinse my nose off.

Hands up, who remembers basic chemistry and that capiscin oil, the “hot” in hot peppers, doesn’t dissolve in water, but does get spread around nicely by it? Well, you’re smarter than I am. After thoroughly spreading it around my right nostril, I ran around in circles for a minute, yelping, trying to remember what you do when you eat hot peppers, and remembering that you were supposed to eat bananas or bread. The prospects for shoving either one up my nose seemed unlikely. I settled for rubbing some calendula lotion for sunburns up my nose, which seems to have worked.

And that was my homecoming experience. Travel broadens the mind…

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