Sunday, June 28, 2009

Revenge of the Jellyfish

Growing up, my family had a tradition of going down to Corpus Christi, Texas, on the Gulf Coast every spring and winter vacation. It was always a torturous 8-hour drive south, but my brothers and I always looked forward to doing one thing: finding as many jellyfish as we could and making huge piles of them on the beach. We loved the way they looked, they way they felt in our hands, and we just thought it was so funny to see towers of jellyfish. 

Looking back, we knew so little about these creatures, i.e. that they can inflict serious pain. One jellyfish sting will rock your world, and some have been known to initiate a fast death. Hmm... kind of makes me wonder how our parents allowed us to stack jellyfish year after year...

Well, the jellyfish finally had its revenge this weekend. We made a trip to Cancun, and on the first day, something got me! Not until the next morning did I notice red welts on my arm. I had no idea what it was, but when I showed it to the hotel staff, they told me I'd been bitten by the aguamala, the jellyfish. Such a fitting name, right? It is so very mal. The treatment is as simple as vinegar, but I've not been consistent. Instead, I've been scratching the dickens out of my welts. It'll be my own fault if they turn into scars, or worse, get infected. Right now I'm on Day 4 of jellyfish hell, and there's no sign of letting up. Now that I'm back home, I'm going to pickle myself in vinegar as often as necessary and hope those welts go away soon. 

Itchy, itchy, itchy!!! I am so in awe of the power of jellyfish. 


  1. OMG that looks bad, Im a scratcher and this would make me crazy. Stick with the vinegar and good luck. This is why I only like fresh water swimming. I hope your trip went ok even though you were itchy.

  2. Would calamine lotion help? Or Aloe vera?

  3. Uy! Aguamala, qué horror!!!

    I am sorry, this always puts a little bit of a dark cloud on a vacation, but enjoy Can Cun, I mean it IS Can Cun, gorgeous beaches and wonderful food. Yum yum.


  4. Both would probably soothe it, but the vinegar is really helping so haven't tried anything else.

  5. Yo soy de Corpus (soy una "corpita"). Meat tenderizer works well, too. Don't pee on it -- that's a dumb myth.