- there being no flies around to eat the midges
- there being no wind
- a mild winter
- ...and it being that time of the year
...means that the blighters are in full swarming mode this morning. After less than 2 minutes outside, I've accumulated another dozen spreading red patches to add to the collection - those from last tuesday are now turning into joined-up miniature bruises.
Here's an archive picture by Lhoon of what appears to be a synchronised attack by a platoon of them (my bite marks are unfortunately larger):
I've recently taken up kick boxing again, having been a bit good at it several years ago and remembering it's a way of losing weight (it's working!) and keeping various muscle groups in shape (or, in my case, getting them someway back to pre-flab days). However, it's an utterly useless form of defence against a swarm of tiny attackers such as the midge. A roundhouse kick leaves them unconcerned and still hovering around, looking for a patch of bare skin to land on. Though it provided a brief moment of amuseument for a pair of passing hikers with flailing arms.
There is a midge forecast service online. It isn't accurate for here, certainly not for today anyway (1 and 2 mean negligible or low levels of midge activity):
There's a wide range of "treatments" and ways of allegedly avoiding the midge, from nets to creams, potions and eating marmite with every meal for 2 weeks before (midges apparently hate the odour of vitamin B12). But the best way of all seems to be a two-pronged approach:
- Is it windy?: safe to go outside
- Is it not windy?: stay indoors
And what exactly is the point of the midge, anyway?