Ah, the fresh green blankets and increased bird and beast activity in the woods: always delightful as spring leaps into summer. With it, of course, comes that dark cousin to those winsome thoughts: poison ivy.
It’s thriving well running along the ground or starting to climb trees. It’s a familiar devil in my life, having had one (and grateful only one) encounter with it back in 2002. I got it so bad that after two rounds of steroids, which apparently the rash interpreted as an aphrodisiac, I had the nasty stuff over 70% of my body (thankfully, not on the face or on/around “other” delicate bits.
Enter the big guns: a prescription for a gallon of goopy steroid cream and the instructions: take an old bedsheet, rip into narrow strips, dunk strips into the goop, then wrap my rash areas up like an Egyptian mummy. Hang around doing nothing and not moving much for two hours or so, twice daily. Ugh.
While inconvenient to say the least, it did kick p.i.’s butt finally. Still, after a week of channeling a bad Hollywood film mummy dressed by an out-of-work costume tech who worked really cheaply, doc gave me a dose of strong-as-they-come steroid pills. I thought afterward that he must have gotten those from a vet since the dosage seemed more appropriate for a moose or elephant. The one-two punch did the trick, but I was not a pleasant person to be around during that last week of those hormone-mugging steroids.
I do recall when I was removing the old, rotted wood deck behind the house how pretty those ivy vines with the purple flowers were climbing the trees deck wound around. Might as well pull them off while I’m at it. Not quite, but almost, a Darwin Award entry.