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Dancing with mosquitoes

We're told that the mosquitoes in Kerala are not malarial which reduces them from a major health risk down to merely bloody annoying.

Every day just before sunset you have to prepare yourself.

Mosquito nets are hung above the beds, mosquito coils are lit and placed in strategic places around the room and any exposed areas of skin are doused with DEET.

The moment around sunset I have christened "hour of the mosquito twitch"

This is the time when your exasperated body aware of the impending attack starts sending all sorts of false signals to your brain. Fearful of being bitten, you begin checking any exposed area of of skin. The slightest movement of a hair follicle in the breeze is enough to have you inspecting your ankle as a forensic detective combs a murder scene for clues.

There is also what I call the "mosquito dance"

This is the ritual performed when a mosquito is spotted flying through the air. Desperate to swat the little blighter you begin leaping about clapping your hands in the air.

Evolution being what it is of course the mosquito is far better at evading the attack and is seldom caught. Periodically you do get lucky.

I think a points system should be in order. One point for an empty one – those producing only a small black splat when the hands are opened – and five points for a full one – that oh-so-satisfying red blood splodge indicating that it had already fed.

And so we crawl under our mosquito nets into bed and hope they haven't worked out how to squeeze though the holes yet..

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