It’s the loveliest time of year, here in the Deepest South. Dogwoods and azaleas are blooming, birds are singing and building their nests, it’s a cool 50 at night and a comfortable 75 during the day. The pines have finished with their arboreal pornography so it’s safe to wash the car. #4 told me, whilst observing the yellow cloud of pollen, that all that yellow stuff was pine sperm (essentially) and I opined that it was a very good thing indeed that people didn’t reproduce like that. He was shocked and grossed out, and said my mind was capable of taking disturbing paths. I did not disagree.
Anyway, every good thing has it’s antithesis. For every superhero there’s a bad guy. It’s no different in Springtime In The South. For every dogwood and azalea and balmy breeze, there’s an oak tree. Mind you, I love an oak tree. They’re tall and broad and nothing make shade like an oak.
Nothing makes pollen like an oak, either. Pine pollen is dense and visible. The pollen grains on a pine are the size of marbles and one does not have an allergic reaction to them. Yes, it gets caught in your nose, but the reaction is a physical one, not chemical involving histamines, etc. Oak pollen, however, is a whole ‘nother thing. Histamines…REACT!
You name it, I’ll have that reaction. Watery eyes, post nasal drip, scratchy throat, sneezing, blowing, the entire ball of allergic wax. Oh I reckon I could go the allergy shot route, but it only lasts a week or so, until the trees drop their flowers, and 4 years of weekly injections isn’t my idea of a good time, and if I play it right, the allergies can be spun into a sad, sad song that sounds like a bad cold, and milked for sympathy and wonton soup from the local Chinese place.
It sometimes is hard to tell if it’s a cold or allergies. I tend to ramp up the coffee consumption when a scratchy throat in involved, as the hot liquid feels good, and the antihistamines make me woozy, so the caffiene counteracts that, then I get a headache from too much coffee, and my joints ache a bit from the lack of activity, and all that combines to feel almost like a cold, which makes me panic mildly because I do hate being sick but am unwilling to drink hot tea instead of coffee, ad infinitum. However, yesterday I was thinking “oh no it’s a cold” but today I’m pretty sure it’s allergies because the Claritin seems to be helping, and while the nose still runs and the eyes still water, I am not feeling the minor psychological misery that comes with viruses. Just sneezing and blowing and wiping my eyes, and I can live with that.