Africa: Creepy Crawlies!

I’ve been meaning to do this post for a while, but have been distracted.  A friend posted this picture the other day on Facebook and reminded me:

pretty cute for a spider, no?  He/she looks relatively small and harmless (and not even real, really), and of course it’s a picture on a computer so I can remain relatively sane about the whole deal.  That being said, I’ve got this irrational fear of spiders.  I’m not a big fan of bugs in general, but travel in the tropics and other parts of the world has forced me to get. over. it. (for the most part, anyways.)

The spider fear stems from an incident with a ginormous spider in my bedroom in when I was little – I swear it was – T H I S B I G !  The family still mocks me about it, but it was huge and it was real and scary even if none of them ever saw it.  So there.

Samoa had some big cockroaches that had a zest for life and sometimes took more effort to kill than expected, but the real issue was those centipedes.  I’ll never forget when I got bit.  I had no idea how much pain could be caused from an insect bite.  I sucked out as much venom as I could, but was amazed as I literally watched the venom travel through my finger up my arm.  A benadryl and a vailima were the cure.  And finding the damn thing and killing it also helped (thanks to my neighbor at the time, Eric the red).  Needless to say I kept  my laundry OFF the floor and sprayed poison Mortein around the house regularly. Nobody wants to come face to face with one of these guys:

So, what does Tanzania have to offer me?

From the WikiTravel website:
Tanzania has its fair share of venomous and deadly insects and animals, such as Black and Green Mambas, scorpions, spiders, stinging ants, lions, sharks, and others. You should take care when walking through high grass; when visiting national parks, or when shoving your hand under rocks or into dark holes — unless you know what you are doing. In actuality, the likelihood of encountering these and other similar dangers is remote.
The insect/animal most residents fear is the mosquito.

So, I guess it could be worse.  Mosquitos I can handle, or at least try to repel as much as possible.  Which reminds me – I need to start getting my shots and malaria stuff in order soon!!


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