A few nights ago, my husband and I were attacked in our bedroom. It was a school night, so we were fast asleep and we have no idea how our attacker came into our bedroom, let alone the apartment. We live in a safe neighborhood and if it wasn’t for the constant hum of cars and buses on the street below us, we’d live in a very safe and quiet neighborhood.
Attacks like the one that happened a few nights ago are common in Rio, in fact, I’ve been told to get used to them and take the necessary precautions against assailants who are small, annoying and blood hungry. I have tried to be both offensive and defensive and I now carry a spray in my purse, and a after bite cream. I have become that lady who is always worried about being attacked. I am constantly attentive to sounds and everything going on around me and listening, not because I am a super fantastic conversationalist, but because I’m afraid. My fears are that I get so engrossed in a conversation about lesson plans, preschool or ANYTHING and I miss stopping an attack. How can a person miss being attacked, you say? They’re quick here in the most beautiful place on Earth…
I must be honest, the attack a few nights ago was not the first. I wish it was, but it seems like I’m being constantly followed. It’s as if I’m wearing a big sign that says, ” she’s new, attack her!” Or “she won’t expect it, go for it!” I mean, I’m sure, I’m not the only who falls victim to attacks like these, but I wear the scars all over my body and I cannot say I am proud of them. I didn’t/don’t fight my attacker(s); Sadly, I don’t even know where they come from until they are already upon me. The attackers are small, and when they land on me, I don’t even feel them. I mean, I come from a safe (I suppose sheltered) area of the U.S and have never had experiences like this before.
But, let’s get back to the attack. As we were asleep, the lights had been off and I was fast asleep. Suddenly, I hear my husband excitedly trying to fight off the attacker who simultaneously was attacking both of us. He turned on the lights and suddenly I’m hit. Literally, on the forehead. My husband smacked me on the forehead. I’m awake now.
But as quick as Gorge wants to believe he is at defending himself and oh yeah, me, he repeatedly missed the blood thirsty attacker. This guy (the attacker, not the husband) was too fast for us and before I could try to hide from both types of attacks (husband and the intruder), I got bit. Yup, again, and again. On my forehead, my cheeks, both of my hands and my arms. I counted three just on my face the next morning when I was assessing the damage.
If you haven’t already guessed, the attacker left his mark on me in a way that did not traumatize me, but it irritated and itched me like no other. He left me in a bad mood, itching and scratching at the most inappropriate times.
This was not the welcoming committee I was expecting from Rio.
I love Rio, but hate the Mosquitoes…