Nope. I am not “giving in again.” Just reviewing the week no longer in progress.

First, the fortnight-long bout with very minor poison ivy (I really am a whining wimp) is nearly over. The left forearm is nearly smooth again, although it looks right now like I might be left, as usual with so many of lifeʼs little experiences, with a scar. I had figured it was poison ivy (or, new to my knowledge base, parsnips, as suggested on Facebook by one friend noticing the postʼs announcement there), and Ericʼs calm observations seemed to fit the situation (although I was far too late to benefit from the “treatment cream” to minimize the hazardous oilʼs impact). The Lovely One insisted I should treat with Cortaid (as others also recommended) and cover the bumps with a big bandaid (sorry, but like kleenex, the brand name best identifies the general product), so I did for most of the time since the post appeared. Now the area is just red and only slightly topographic, and I feel sure it will be just skin soon.

(Now there was a really selfcentered, selfserving and tedious paragraph.) Thanks, all who tried to provide advice!

Second, my boss did arrive for our shared ride while I checked the status of my traps. He was running late, so our adventure together only lasted about three hours, during which he showed me poison ivy (my recently acquired tree-based nature incompetence interprets the appearance as “boxelder-like leaves in threes”), did all the trap work for me, indicating how I was to search the traps for possible green beetles, and assigned me a change of work for the rest of this past week and the next. It seemed that my partner (“former partner,” I suppose) was somewhat behind setting her massive number of gypsy moth traps (she ceased to partner me in order to begin the gypsy moth trapping with the end of May) so I was to quit my current trap searches and help her finish putting up gypsy moth traps in Linn County.

And so I did. I spent Wednesday and Thursday over in Cedar Rapids, riding along in her van as she took us to the nearly hundred spots where I stapled the moth traps. A nice change of pace for me (and pleasant riding with her again, too, I guess), although I missed my autonomy (as I always do when I am not being autonomous), and I learned new stuff and reviewed my USDA computer skills by entering data for her (as she had done for us with emerald ash borers). Next week that work continues in Scott County.

And thatʼs the week that was, folks. Forty hours on the job spread over five days (Monday was an oil change for the GOV, and today was my final six hours of work for the week, traipsing about western Jackson County finding too many downed or missing traps). And that was all I did, certainly no writing…

©2011 John Randolph Burrow, Magickal Monkey Enterprises, Ltd, S.A.

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