As we sat on the couch talking, the swarm of mosquitoes around my ankles was bothersome.
Now mosquitos generally are not critters that I’m particularly fond of. Anywhere. In a place like Ubaúna where the threat of anything from dengue to malaria to the rarity of yellow fever that are all mosquito-borne, my fondness for them is even less. Given that they seem to like you a whole lot more when you are sweaty, sticky and grimy — and you stay that way in Ubaúna — you are probably going to become acquaintances with the flying vermin no matter what you do.
On this particular night, the swarm was almost alarming. I was easily counting 10-15 of the beasts honing in on my exposure ankle flesh. I was continually swatting at them, much like a cow continually swishes his tail to ward off flies. At times one would slowly hover in front of you and you would bring your two hands up and making a loud clapping motion, gleefully examining the black and red guts squished into your palm. I’m sure that anyone watching us without the privilege of audio and excellent video would
have found our interactions comical: four folks sitting on couches, clapping, slapping, waving and fanning, all the while talking animately.
Now in the comfort of an air conditioned, mosquito-free environment, I’m ruminating on how much I take for granted and how careless I am with the blessings I’ve been given. I’m keenly aware of my lack of gratitude. But I know that it will fade in the coming days and that it will simply be a distant memory within a month.
Perhaps I need to ask for better memory than for more blessings…