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March 25, 2013 / la otra Mexicana

Singing Scorpions

Singing Scorpions

A long time ago a friend told me that you could tell the difference between the songs of crickets and scorpions by the length of their chirrido, I have to use the Spanish word no English word that I can think of gives the same effect. Crickets chirrup chirrup chirrup, scorpions chiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiirrrrrriiiiiiido – their song is long and uninterrupted. Of course very few people know that scorpions sing.
My friend told me of someone who was so lonely she was comforted by the sound of the scorpions singing in the woodpile.
Not so long ago as that story but still over ten years ago, when I was staying in the old Hacienda de Santa Ana, I would sleep with the lights on and sometimes sit bolt upright in the middle of the night seeing a scorpion on the wall. There were many. I became very fast with my sandal. My summer helpers, Maura and Cassandra knew this. They never saw scorpions. They said it was because I was a Scorpio that I saw them.
One night I became very ill with a high fever. The girls had to walk out to the pay phone down the street to call our friend Victor who took me to the hospital where I as diagnosed with an intestinal malady most likely from eating too much highly spiced, greasy, delicious food. I was given medication and sent home to bed with both girls sitting watch. I still had a high fever.
‘Can you hear the scrpions singing?’ Iasked somewhere in the night.
The two girls looked at each other in terror, sure that I was hallucinating.
I am afraid that I was too sick to tell them the whole story until morning, and they spent a much worse night than I!


One Comment

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  1. Eustace Greaves Jr / Apr 25 2013 12:23 pm

    Whether singing or stinging, I try to avoid them.

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