Winged fiends

When you live ashore in the tropics you have to arrange yourself with mosquitoes and lots of other bugs. Around towns authorities spray against bugs in many areas, but here on Taravai everything’s organic and non-toxic, so we have to live with and around the winged fiends. They are worse on rainy days and less on sunny and breezy days, but they’re always around.

The past few days we had lots of rain, so the mosquitoes have bred and are as numerous as it gets. We spend the night under a mosquito net, so in the morning we can hear them start buzzing around the net, desperately searching for a hole to get to the delicious bodies underneath as soon as the sun comes up. Tiger-stripe mosquitoes get up early and now we understand why the locals (who mostly don’t sleep under nets) are up so early as well…

As soon as we slip out from underneath the net we cover up with long trousers and T-Shirts, light up a mosquito-coil and only then start brewing tea. During the day the situation’s not so bad, but at 4 o’clock the tiger-stripes get really aggressive and then it’s best to spray some deet and light coconut-fires (best would be to hide under the net again, but we usually don’t have the time for that). Fortunately they go to sleep early, so around 7 we can sit outside again without constantly slapping ourselves.

There are just very few night-time mosquitoes around, so they are not an issue, but we still close all windows and doors in the evening before we turn on the lights, or otherwise we have clouds of moths and and bugs inside.

Leeloo is lucky, her thick fur seems to be an impregnable armour, so the cat watches our predicament with condescending amusement (but that’s the expression cats usually have when they study human behaviour anyway).

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