A Scorpion Encounter!

We were driving up to Boquete in the car loaded with musical equipment. I always seem to get chilly on the way so I grabbed my rain jacket from behind the seat and laid it over myself. About 20 minutes later I see something crawling up the front of the jacket towards my face. SCORPION! It wasn’t this one but it looked just like it. STOP the car, pull over NOW! I didn’t want it crawling any higher, but I didn’t want to shake it off on to my lap or feet either. Thankfully it didn’t seem alarmed and didn’t put up its tail ready to sting, but it was still a lot closer than I wanted to be to a scorpion.

In the bucket

Joel pulled over, I leapt out of the car, tried to shake it off my jacket but it tried to crawl into the pocket. Sheesh! I did finally manage to get it off though, and left it lying in a puddle as I dashed back into the car and out of the rain.

These scorpions can give you a painful sting but they aren’t deadly or seriously dangerous. Still though, I would really rather not get stung. We were trying to figure out how it got on the jacket. I wore it unloading equipment in the rain last Sunday, and I think the jacket had been in the car every since then. Or, did I leave it in the laundry room, and then put it back in the car on Wednesday? I know I didn’t put the jacket in the car today. Or, did the scorpion come on the equipment, all of which had been in the house for days?

Who knows? But all clothing will definitely be shook out when the car is loaded! Thank goodness too that it was on the outside of the jacket and not inside next to me.

The good news is that we were headed to our first band practice with the drummer, and it went even better than I dared to hope. We still have three weeks more to practice and I’m getting more confident, especially after today, that I can pull this off. We have some good stuff going on and it’s getting more and more exciting.


About Kris Cunningham

We live in David, Chiriqui Provence, Republic of Panama! This blog is about some of our experiences in our new country.
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24 Responses to A Scorpion Encounter!

  1. Robert & Helen. says:

    Always good to have some anti-hystamine tablets within reach. They are very cheap. We have been bitten a couple of times in St. Lucia (Caribbean)


    • We have some in the house, but I should probably put a couple in my purse just in case something would happen when we are out.


      • Laureen MacDonald says:

        Also good to have some Apis Malefica in the glove box of the car for emergencies in case of stings and bites of creatures such as this. Homeopathy helped save the life of one of our dogs that got bitten in the face by a rattlesnake. Homeopathic remedies are inexpensive and have a long shelf. Benadryl is good to take too, but does not typically have a very long shelf life.


  2. 😱 It is always such a mystery as to how scorpions end up in our clothes and shoes. Once Ron put his shoes on that were on the top of the closet. We drove into town and he was going to walk to the chiropractor to tell him he had to cancel his appointment because he had shingles. He stopped in the middle of the street, threw off his shoe, and howled. Mind you, about 20 minutes had passed since he put his shoes on. A scorpion was trapped in the toe of his shoe and it stung him. He had a hard time getting the scorpion out of the toe of his shoe. At least it took his mind off the pain of shingles for a while. We still can’t figure out how it got in his shoe which was on the top shelf of the closet. I hate those evil critters!


    • That’s crazy!! I’m guessing it took that long for it to get its tail out and into a stinging position? Yeah, heck of a way to take your mind off the shingles. Sheesh. This is a good reminder to shake out and inspect everything!


  3. natjtan says:

    Rather you than me! I think I’ve read somewhere that if they have large pinchers and a smaller tail, the sting’s not as bad or deadly. If they pinchers are small and the tail and stinger big, run!


    • Really? Interesting, thanks. I think these have large pinchers but their sting is plenty bad enough according to people who have experienced it. Word is that we don’t have any deadly scorpions but I’ll treat them all with respect and distance.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Rudy Neufeld says:

    Hi Kris,

    I’ve been reading, learning and enjoying your Panama Adventure blog. This story grabbed my attention, not because of the scorpion but your presence of mind. [Must be “the nurse” in you.]

    Phyllis –she corresponded with you a few months back about finding a place free of mold and moisture and you suggested the Azuero Peninsula—and I were living on a tiny island in the Philippines back in the early 1980s. We lived “up close” with nature in a “house” built with bamboo and palm thatch. So we got our share of uninvited critters dropping in on us regularly. One morning I escorted a visitor to the beach where she’d try to hail a passing boat to catch a ride to the larger island where she could get transportation to her next destination. It was rainy season so I grabbed an umbrella we’d hung up on the wall. Walking to the beach I kept twirling it round like a baton. Once we reached the beach I realized the furled up umbrella was a bit too thick and it was moving. I unfurled the umbrella and a very angry iguana dropped at my feet!

    Okay, that’s not as scary as the scorpion. But Phyllis could top us both. She was staying with a missionary doctor on a neighboring island recovering from typhoid. The home had a spitting cobra that lived under the propane fired refrigerator. Guests were warned not to wander around during the night and told they definitely should not raid the refrigerator after dark.

    Incidentally, Phyllis is now in Boquete. She just completed Jackie Lange’s expat tour and she’s now taking a few days to revisit a couple areas. No idea whether she’ll choose to stay but her daily reports by phone have sufficiently intrigued me that I’m willing to give it a go. [Volcan or Boquete seem the most attractive.]

    Please continue blogging Panama Adventure. I really think it’s great!!



    • An iguana in the umbrella?! 🤣 Oh my. The closest I’ve come to that is unfolding the hammock and finding a lizard. The spitting cobra though…. ahh…. no…. he’d have to go. That’s a heck of a way to cure a night time snacking habit.
      Phyllis wants a place free of mold and moisture and she is in Boquete in the rainy season. Hmm…. it sure is beautiful up there though. I’m glad we have to drive up from David because we almost always experience spectacular scenery on the way.


  5. Hi Kris — Been running a kitchen, experiencing a once in a lifetime Eclipse with my kids here and preserving different veggies that have over run the garden and threaten to take over the kitchen. So been away from WP again for a while.
    But WOW! The title of this one grabbed me too and I had to find out What Happened!? Glad you are safe and did not get stung. Also very happy to hear that your music practice endeavors are paying off and that you’ll soon be joining Joel and Company on stage. Thanks for your steadfastness to blogging. I hope to write about the eclipse soon but so much is happening in the community right now. Til later, Alia


    • Wow, it sounds like you have been super busy but all good things.
      My son in law and his mom drove to central OR to stay with a relative and see the eclipse, maybe not far from you. They had a heck of a time getting back to Seattle though because of all the super heavy traffic.
      Keep up all the good work, and maybe you can play catch up when winter comes, or maybe more important that you just keep doing all your good things.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you for understanding Kris. It’s been a long, beyond busy summer and we still have close to a thousand pounds of pears and apples on our trees — to process, so I’m not back to blogging yet. Winter is on the way though and I remember a different (much slower) pace from being here last year. Love to you, Alia


  6. David says:

    I’m in a apartment in town (Boquete ) took a shower and went to dry off with towel, and a little lisard, jumped out, tried to catch him but he was way too fast, he’s in here some where.


    • Aww, cute. They are fast! We have geckos everywhere down here, and a few other types of lizards as well. I figure if they want to hang out in or out of the house and eat bugs that’s fine with us.


  7. jim and nena says:

    Hola Kris,
    a friend got stung harvesting coconuts while climbing the tree. Dropped into his shirt and stung him in the abdomen. It hurt like the dickens and left a swelling and redness about palm-sized. He took some aspirin and we put some aloe on it. A day later he was OK but still had some soreness in the area. The best course of action is to let one crawl away instead of causing them to defend themselves. They really only sting when forced.


  8. Carole says:

    We don’t have scorpions were we live , but I have been stung a few times by centipedes, very painful. My leg got real swollen and was painful for a long time.


    • We have a lot of centipedes here and people say they don’t sting, but I’ve heard a sting can be wicked so I stay away from them too. I hope that never happens to you again!


    • jim and nena says:

      Centipedes have pincers and venom. If you can choose, take the scorpion sting. Less painful. The centipede bite hurts more and there is a greater danger from infection. Keeping the wound clean is important, especially in a tropical climate.
      The locals have various stories about which colors/appearances are the worst. To me, they are all the worst.


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