Blog readers may remember the excruciating rash that I had for the entire month of June. I was fairly certain that it came from contact with tomato plants, but the doctor I visited convinced me that it had come in contact with poison oak, by way of the feral cats.
Since that time, I've been washing my hands and arms like a maniac, every time I pet the neighborhood cats. I feel like Lady Macbeth, with a tube of Technu. The cats, of course, are clean as clean can be. And it really is unlikely that our little neighborhood supports poison oak plantations.
As it turns out, the tomatoes are the culprits. The other day, I was tying up our gigantic tomato plants, and I neglected to wash my arms after I finished. Some green tomato sap got on my arms, but I didn't realize it at the time. In the morning, the sap was still there, and under the sap stains, I had that same familiar itchy bumpy blotchy rash.
Tracking down allergies is a tricky business. Twice, I've had such severe allergic reactions to hot peppers that I've ended up in the emergency room. But there's no standard test for pepper allergies, so my suspected allergy to members of the nightshade family isn't "official."
I'm itching, and waiting to get another visit with my doctor. Meanwhile, the cats are laughing at my stupidity.