After spending two days on the road, battling the Latvian mosquito population, I’ve spent the last five days admitting defeat. I’ve been scratching my ankles, I’ve been scratching my chin, I’ve been scratching pretty much everywhere in between, including a particularly fetching little hillock on my arse.
Having spent the best part of a week
asking pitifully whining ‘Why me?’, I’ve finally stopped itching enough to figure out the answer. A few months ago, my students told me Latvians believe that if you swing at Easter, it helps ward off mosquitoes during the summer. Well, let me tell you, my eyebrows shot up, my heartbeat quickened – finally, a Latvian tradition I could get on board with.
Clearly, in my excitement, I had forgotten which country I live in. This is Latvia, remember, land of dashed hopes. And this time wouldn’t be any different. Of course, they were talking about this kind of swinging…
And so, disappointed yet again, I pooh-poohed the tradition, scoffed in the face of swinging. But now, 4 zillion mosquito bites later, I’m not so sure.
Maybe there is something to this swinging lark after all? Perhaps a few splinters in the arse at Easter is preferable to scratching it for 3 months during the summer? And so, my dear Latvians, next Easter please be gentle with me, for I will be…the newest swinger in town.