Years ago I made a good friend laugh really hard. Actually, I seem to make people laugh all the time. Apparently, absent mindedness and self-deprecation are hilarious. However, there are certain occasions I don’t plan to put on a show. It’s these moments I tend to remember.
On this specific day I was working at a greenhouse when I suddenly got the urge to leave my constant post at the front counter and actually GO OUTSIDE. I decided I was in the green industry and it was time to see some green. Upon exiting the building I reasoned I should be capable of watering trees. I grabbed a hose and turned toward another employee to inquire where I may begin my task. The moment I looked at my friend he started to laugh hysterically and point at my face. Apparently, during the two minutes I’d been in, "the wild," I'd acquired a massive mosquito bite in the middle of my face. “Rayna, you’re just not made for outside work,” he told me.
Many years later I still remember that moment, mostly because my welt was epic and I was embarrassed by my body’s lack of endurance for the, “elements.” At the beginning of this summer I was again reminded of my friend’s words. I suddenly found myself temporarily working for my boyfriend’s landscaping company. Needless to say everything I was required to accomplish was OUTDOORS. I felt insecure in my ability to achieve these tasks. However, I reasoned if someone who has lived with me for almost ten years believes I can do it, then maybe it’s possible. After about a month and a half of the rugged life I was convinced, “No problem, I got this guys. Do you want me to mow the back field with the John Deere…paint a dump truck…repot about sixty perennials…prune trees? I do it all.” Yep, I take pride in the new skills I’ve acquired this summer.
Yes indeedy, and I did it all with only a few minor setbacks. Okay, so I admit there was that legendary first sunburn that probably flawed this china doll’s skin forever. I’m also reminded of the week where I had trouble standing fully upright do to the spasms I was experiencing up and down my back after a morning of moving potted shrubs. Huh, I guess they call it, “backbreaking,” work for a reason. Come to think of it I also had that unfortunate afternoon where I discovered industrial blue paint does not simply wash off one’s skin. I reasoned my speckled appearance was rather painterly and besides I like to think blue is a good color on me. Of course, I did discover it does eventually flake off, especially when one’s skin is molting in sheets. Then there was that lovely day I was introduced to the concept of chiggers. Apparently chiggers are insects that reside in wooded areas exactly like our back shelterbelt…were I was often working. While chigger bites are rather small, I must emphasize that THEY ARE MADDENING! During my lifetime I’ve never experienced something so irritating and unrelenting. I’m willing to admit this is probably due to the volume of bites I received. At one point I think I had five of them in my bellybutton alone. MY BELLYBUTTON!!!...which caused it to get rather infected looking…which caused me to keep putting Bactine and Band-Aids on it…which caused me to get a rash around it…and my God was I disgusting at that point! Actually, I believe, “that point,” was about the time I took the photographs above. Now, I’d like to specify I was still able to hide most of my maladies that day because these images were taken before my cat decided to sink his fangs into my left arm causing a wound which swelled to the size of a softball. To which I treated with…wait for it…BACTINE, despite the advice of one doubtful and concerned pharmacist.
Now I ask my readers, “Who say’s this lady can’t work outside?” I guess if I were being truly realistic I would admit the fact that’s it’s probably a positive thing I now have a job working indoors…with children. I mean kids, how detrimental could that be? Oh...and no, I’m not at all concerned about that recent lice outbreak.
Skirt: Vintage (Handmade)
Purse: Vintage (Coach)
Sunglasses: Kate Spade