Thursday, June 30, 2016

I had an ant stuck in my throat

Here's what happened.

We were on a camping trip to beautiful Fort Stevens, Oregon, and my son Peter and I were picking blackberries and thimbleberries along a trail. We had just encountered a nice big patch of ripe thimbleberries, and were eating them avidly - they have a great taste, a little nutty, with a touch of honey. Thimbleberries are native to the Pacific Northwest, and you'll never find them in stores, because they're extremely delicate and usually get a bit smooshed when you pick them.

Obviously there was one ant that thought as highly of thimbleberries as I do. While eating, I got a scratchy feeling in my throat, like something wouldn't go down. I thought I had perhaps eaten a bit of dried leaf stuck to a berry, or swallowed an insect. It wasn't painful, but it was uncomfortable and didn't go away.

We biked back to our campsite, my throat still feeling weird. I gargled, and then tried eating a piece of bread to push whatever it was down my throat. No luck.

I had my husband Eric look at it. He said "There's a black thing in there". I had the kids, with their sharp eyesight, look at it. They told me that there was an ant stuck in my throat! I looked in the car mirror, and it was pretty visible, clamped onto my uvula, which is the dangly thing hanging from the back of your throat.

Can you see it back there? By the way, on the right that's a silver filling, not a rotten tooth.

Now you can see it, right?

I tried getting a spoon and scraping it off. Major gagging was involved, but I wasn't able to scrape it off. I tried wrapping a napkin around a spoon, and scraping it off, to give it a little more friction. Still no luck.

Then I just reached back into my throat with thumb and forefinger, and pulled it off. There was a little tug as as I pulled it off - it was clamped on pretty well!

It sure was a relief to get the ant out of my throat. I had no problem ignoring my gag reflex - having an ant in my throat was a powerful motivator!

And it's out!


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