Sleeping with Scorpions

Published: October 26th 2016
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Total Distance: 0 miles / 0 kmMouse: 0,0

Arca de Noé, Lake Atitlan, Guatemala Oct 16-30, 2012

I was flat on my back, my head straight against the pillow, my laptop nestled up against bent knees. I was playing a computer game for an hour or so, willing myself to get sleepy. Eventually I put my laptop away, turned off my light and rolled over to my side. Scratch, scratch, scratch. Nothing. Scratch, scratch, scratch. “What the….?” I thought to myself. Again and again I heard this noise, but never felt anything moving under me or on the walls against the bed. My first thought was “mouse,” then “rat,” although I hadn’t seen either the entire two weeks I was staying in this little bungalow by the lake. I thought perhaps one or both of the little rodents could be under the bed, and then after some time listening to the repeated scratch, scratch, scratch, I started to wonder if it could be something in the mattress. I had given up thinking it was something on my bed, given the fact I could hear something but not feel anything crawling against my body. Again, the faint scratch, scratch, scratch.I was puzzled, but sleep soon came over me.

I tossed and turned for three hours, waking often to this sound, this feeling, this thing that just wouldn’t go away.

Finally, at 1:30 in the morning, I searched for and turned on my head torch. A tiny scorpion, maybe about an inch long was crawling on my pillow where my head had just lain. Goosebumps! A “tiny” scorpion is still a scorpion in my book. In all my middle of the night bleariness, I managed to carry my pillow across the room and flick the little sucker outside my door. I put the pillow back on my bed before stopping to think: That little guy couldn’t possibly have made all that racket these past three hours? With my head torch still on and my brain coming to consciousness, I slowly peeled back my pillow case, only to discover to my horror, one of the largest, blackest meanest looking scorpions I have ever seen. Yes, I ate one in Thailand years ago and that little sucker was pretty large – but it was dead, fried, seasoned – and this one was alive, tail poised and ON MY PILLOW! If ever there was a time to yell out
My roommateMy roommateMy roommate

I didn't only have scorpions for roomies!
profanities, it was then.

The goose bumps came back ten-fold, my heart beating straight through my sleeping shirt. With shaky hands I managed to once again get the door open and with the aid of a random yogurt lid resting by the door, I flicked this monster into the nearby bushes, hoping he wouldn’t make a reappearance – this time possibly with a vengeance. I was still shaking when I did what I knew I had to do. I pulled the pillow case completely off and turned it inside out ever so carefully, but thankfully there were no more creatures of the night hiding inside. Next, I stripped my bed (one can’t be too careful, you know) and lo and behold, there was another damn scorpion! What the hell is going on, I thought to myself, thinking this must be a mad, crazy dream.

I stayed up for two more hours, reading and trying to calm my nerves. Thankfully, eventually, I managed three more hours of solid sleep before ringing in the new day.

How I never got stung I have no idea. How, with my arm under the bottom part of my pillow and my head on the top, this arachnid never got me, I’ll never know. All I know is someone was looking after me that night.

Additional photos below
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The inside of my private bungalow on the lakeThe inside of my private bungalow on the lake
The inside of my private bungalow on the lake

The scorpions were found in the blue-covered bed

13th November 2016

Suzi, com 'on...certainly you can do better at finding roommates! Icky..eeek..makes me ever did you finally sleep? Enchanting place, but! Onward!! Dolores
13th November 2016

Icky eek...but not really
Dolores, you crack me up! Spiders and creepy crawlers don't both me, but waking up to THREE scorpions in my bed wasn't very pleasant. It took a while before I finally fell back to sleep, and fortunately the little buggers never came back.

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