Wednesday, September 8, 2010

THE MIDGES OF SKYE



On our last night in Skye, after we returned to our B&B, Cathy and I watched "Milk", the story of Harvey Milk's life and death. We chatted and commented on blogs on Cathy's Notebook while drinking a dram or two of single malt, which I had never liked before, but for which I acquired a taste due to Cathy's repeatedly putting a glass of the drink in front of me. She made me do it. You know how that is and shame on Cathy.

While we were walking from the car to the house, we slapped at a few midges. Once we were in my room, we felt more bites, and I killed more than a few of the annoying insects that I saw on the bed. Where were they coming from? We couldn't have carried that many in with us when we entered the house. I checked the windows, and both were closed.

After Cathy left, I slapped at the remaining midges on the bed and got ready to go to sleep. One of the bed pillows was on the love seat in my room, and when I looked at it, it was covered with midges, like the picture above! My picture is a crude Photoshop, and the size of the midges is way out of proportion, as the insects are tiny, but it gives you an idea of what I saw. I gently picked up the pillow and placed it on the floor outside the door to my room and went to bed. What attracted the large number of midges to the white bed pillow?

Not for a second did I believe that all the midges were out of my room, and sure enough, after the light was out, I was still slapping at them as they bit me. When the midges were not actually biting me, I imagined them biting me, so, as you can guess, I slept very little that night. Unfortunately, the next day was a marathon travel day, beginning early in the morning, and involving ferries and trains after we turned in our car.

The B&B was lovely; the rooms were beautiful, and each morning we were served a delicious breakfast. I doubt that the large number of midges in my room was the fault of the proprietors.

From Wyrdology:
Midge Facts

The midge, also known as "midgie" or "midgy", is a tiny flying insect of the genus "culicoides". There many thousands of known midge species, of which only a few bite. One of the most ferocious biters is the Highland Biting Midge, Culicoides impunctatus. This is known in Gaelic as "Meanbh-chuileag" which means "tiny fly".
That's about right.