What I Did on my Summer Vacation

On my summer vacation I was stungrayed! I realize this is not a word but how else do you explain being stung by a stingray? Thus stungrayed.

Somewhere in the mayhem that was August with visits to  family and friends in KY and gearing up for a temp move to California, Steve and I squeezed in a proper family vacation with our adorable niece and nephew and their parents.  Our little gathering took place on Bald Head Island, North Carolina. Bald Head is not a typical gypsy destination however it proved to be a great place for a vacation with toddlers. With sand & surf a hundred yards from our door, a golf cart to cruise around the car free island on, and nearby pools and ice cream shops for back up, it was an easy week for us kids both young and not so young.

Easy, except for the part about how I came to be stungrayed. First morning at the beach everything was going great: Luke & Sara building sand castles with Steve, the parents shooed off for some walk on the beach time, then there is me deciding the warm waters of the Atlantic are nice enough to overcome my vague unease with being in the ocean and off I go for a little splash around.

Next up a sudden jolt of searing pain in my foot followed by the thought, “that hurt but it wasn’t a shark,” followed by me looking around for a shark anyway cause ya know your supposed to punch them, split second later there was a high step sprint to shore. I pull up at the water’s edge to see a small bleeding cut on my foot. I motion my usually helpful husband over who glances at it and for the next half hour tells me, “you must have cut it on a shell, what else could it be? “  He feels bad about this now but of course he’ll never live it down.

After sitting on the beach and talking myself out of a panic attack, I head in for some ice. You put ice on everything right? It continued to HURT so we soon carted off to the island first aid station located in the firehouse. They knew instantly that I was stungrayed and filled up a plastic tub of hot water for me to soak my foot in – this is the standard treatment. They also checked for a barb – luckily there was no sign of anything still in my foot. Back to the house, I had the rare experience of riding in a golf cart with my foot in a tub of water. A couple hours of soaking and the pain vanished. A week later my MD pals in Denver talked me into a tetnus booster.  And now nearly three weeks later I have a swollen, red foot and my first week in CA included arguing with a doc about my need for antibiotics.  I won.

The rest of the week on Bald Head was perfect. Steve and I kayaked in the swamp- sounds strange but really pleasant. We took a sailing lesson that turned out to be way more hands on than we expected.  Learn to sail is on my list right below learn to avoid seasickness.

Best of all we had a wonderful time catching up with family and enjoying heaps of good food and wine.  Ten months or so had passed since we had seen our niece and nephew. They’re growing up quickly for sure but still they wear well the same adorable personalities we’ve known all along.  Sarah Clare ruled us all like the powerful princess she is.  Luke put forth a surprisingly thoughtful argument of why he should go in the van with Bro-Jill to California.

Someday, Luke, someday.

Upon hearing of my stungray status Eric forwarded me this stringray cartoon. Steve now quotes it to me.


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