2012 Apr 6
Our time here at Thousand Trails in Whitney, Texas, so far has been wonderfully relaxing, after the excitement of our travel day. The park has lots of amenities, like a basketball court, tennis courts, a pool table, library and computers. There are some things that aren't open yet, like the pools, and hot tub. WiFi is available at most sites in Sections B & D. There aren't many people here; quite a change from Florida where we were sometimes too close to our neighbor. We love hearing all the bird song and the coyotes. According to the map, there is also a horse corral, but we haven't seen it yet, nor do we know if there are resident horses, or if some folks actually bring their own horses. That's on our list of things to find out. One really nice feature here that we have only seen at one other campground, in a small "supply post", a little store. This one happened to have the sewer hose connection piece that we needed. YEAH!
The only negative we've encountered is very, very tiny, but only with regard to its actual size. The negative is the lone star tick! It is a very tiny tick, approximately the size of half a rice crispy kernel. I'd give a size in millimeters, but my metric recognition is poor. They are reddish colored and the females have a white spot of their backs, hence their name. They are not indigenous to Texas, but do live as far west as central Texas. We have, so far, removed three of these creatures, with great difficulty. None appeared to be female. All have seemed to be immature. They have not been found on Greyla, nor on me. For some reason, they have all been on Raymond. Two have been on his neck, just below his hairline and last night, on was removed from his underarm. That one was the most difficult to remove.
They are carriers of lyme disease, as well as erhlichiosis, and STARI(Southern Tick Associated Rash Infection).
My concern now, is to communicate to Raymond how important it is to track his physical reaction and any symptoms he may develop in the next 2-14 days. His initial reaction, after being grossed out that he had been tick food, was to say, "I'll be fine", as if by shear power of will he could avoid any ill effects! This is his response to most illness, even his bouts of pancreatitis. (Well, during pancreatitis, not so much, but after and before, always!) I have read him information from the CDC, NIH, and a couple of Universities. They all say the same thing: monitor reaction, save the tick in alcohol, see a doctor. We flushed our dead ticks, but only after fully identifying them. Now we have the dates of the bites on the calendar and I am trying to monitor Raymond. There is a medical center in Whitney, and I would like him to see a doc before we leave here next Thursday, just for peace of mind (and maybe prophylactic antibiotics), but so far, he's still in "I'll be fine" mode. I pray he's correct.
For information about the various types of ticks and the diseases they carry, check out the link below.