Wednesday is always the day for irritations and small frictions to show. We have been a bit cranky today, for a variety of reasons. Chip stayed home instead of going to the beach with the rest of us, and Hank was blasting his way through a book, mostly to get something unpleasant over with ASAP. The flies were biting like crazy, and Trey came back to the house early. The only way I could tough it out was by sitting in the surf, raising my book over my head when big waves came.
Sarah and Suzanne, though, played in the ocean the entire day. They stayed after the rest of us gave it up, only coming in when they were completely exhausted. Now we're all mellow and baked, in better humors, debating cooking shrimp or going out again. A little Tylenol helps, too.
Here's the third controversial thing: what made the beach bearable today was that we moved off of the surfing beach, which is up inside Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge, and down to the beach near the houses. It was more crowded down there, but had the advantage of fewer flies. The reason for the fewer flies is that Rodanthe/Waves/Salvo send trucks around every night with mosquito and fly mist. They do this from May to September, because if they didn't, the mosquitoes would carry everyone off, and the flies would eat the bits the mosquitoes didn't.
Normally, I hate things like this. I have always objected to the use of chemicals and the total-kill approach, on the grounds that we don't know what we're doing to the ecosystem or ourselves with all these poisons. BUT biting flies are a scourge on the earth, and I would cheerfully spray them with DDT, I think, if it would kill them all off. They're practically unkillable by normal means -- I knocked one senseless, crushed it with my fingers, and then buried it in the sand, only to see it come struggling out into the sunlight a couple of minutes later. Bring on the bug spray!