How many eyelashes does a ladybug have? Shall I count them?

“Girls, I need a ladybug! Nancy wants me to count a ladybug's eyelashes.”

"But, Mum,” says Imogen, “do ladybugs even have eyelashes?”

I don't know. It's not a question I've ever considered. I decide to Google it to find out

Do ladybugs have eyelashes?

I find this…

Ladybug Feather False Eyelashes feature long, feathery eyelashes that have red
spots against a black background. Complete your ladybug costume with Ladybug
Feather False Eyelashes

If you want to be a realistic pretend ladybug, it seems eyelashes are essential.

I also find this…

Recently we installed a set of eyelashes on a VW Beetle.  Not a graphic art wrap or painted on eyelashes, but an actual set of eyelashes.  As strange as this may sound, the addition of the eyelashes actually made the Beetle Bug a prettier car.  

Now a ladybug belongs to the beetle family, so it seems quite possible that a ladybug does indeed have eyelashes.

“I think there's a good chance ladybugs have eyelashes,” I tell my daughters. “Now all I need is a ladybug and then I can start counting.”

Luckily it's ladybug season. The girls go outside and gather a sample for me. I place a little bug on the tip of my finger and peer at it. I bring my finger closer and closer, and soon my eye is right up against the bug.

“I can’t see a thing,” I say. I am having trouble seeing.

Trouble seeing...

When I was a teenager, something dreadful happened: I became short sighted and my mother found out. She marched me off to an optometrist, and we returned home with a pair of gold-rimmed ugly-making glasses. I put them on and peered into the mirror. Yes, I could see perfectly. I wished I couldn't. I refused to wear those glasses, preferring instead to stumble around in a blurry world.

I met Andy at school. He was short sighted too, but that was okay. His glasses made him look like John Lennon which was very cool. Andy asked me to go out to the cinema with him, and I said yes. We settled in our seats, just as the lights went out. Wearing his glasses, Andy enjoyed watching the movie. I sat and listened. Would you believe I wouldn't even wear my glasses in the dark?

A momentous day arrived when I was about 19. I was fitted with my first pair of contact lenses. Wow! The whole world looked bigger and brighter. I discovered what Andy really looked like. I realised he was even more handsome than I imagined. I now had perfect sight without having to wear ugly glasses. It was wonderful. No one even suspected I was short sighted. All went well for many years.

Then one day while I was in the supermarket, an old lady handed me a jar of something and asked me to read the label for her. I peered and squinted, and eventually handed the jar back, label unread. I couldn’t make out a single word. Had I turned into an old lady too? A quick trip to the optometrist revealed my near sight was deteriorating. This time there was no avoiding the glasses. I came home with a pair of reading glasses to wear over the top of my contact lenses, which I wear over my eyeballs. (I've just realised that's three sets of eyes!)

I am quite happy wearing my reading glasses in the privacy of my own home. I have even been known to quickly slip them onto my nose in public. Ugly or not, I haven't much choice as I can't read or write anything without them. And I can't not write, can I?

My near sight dilemma had been solved but my vision problems weren’t over. The next thing to disappear was my night vision. "Is that a truck ahead?" I asked Andy. "Where's the edge of the road? I missed my turn-off? Oops! I didn't see that man. What's he doing trying to cross the road?" Andy soon decided it was prudent for me not to drive at night. I had to agree.

Then one evening my eldest daughter, Felicity needed a lift home from work. No one else was available, so I decided to brave the dark. Felicity, poor girl, had to brave her mother. Unfortunately, it was a cold and very wet winter’s night. I leaned forward over the steering wheel, straining my eyes as I peered through the falling rain, and somehow managed to get to my daughter's place of work without hitting anyone or anything. 

Now if Felicity had been standing on the curb waiting for me to arrive, all might have gone well, but I had to wait a while for her to appear. By the time she came running towards the car, I had breathed quite a lot. All the windows had steamed up, and it was impossible to see anything outside. I wiped my hand over the windscreen to clear a viewing hole, turned up the air conditioner to a fast blast, rolled down the window a little way, and started the engine.

“Can you see where you’re going, Mum?”

“Sort of… well, not really… I’ll be okay!”

But I wasn’t okay. I made a left hand turn and then another, and then all of a sudden, I hit something hard which made the car rise into the air. We landed with a thud. My heart was racing as I pulled over to the side of the road, wound down the car window and stuck my head out. Oh no! I'd driven right over the top of the roundabout, instead of around it. I'd failed to stop at an intersection I hadn't even seen.

“Oops! That could have been nasty,” I admitted. "I could have hit someone."  I looked at Felicity and asked, "Did I frighten you?” My eldest daughter must be made of sturdy stuff. She just grinned. She obviously thrives on unexpected dangerous adventures.

But back to the ladybug...

I tried looking for eyelashes using my contact lensed eyes. I put on my reading glasses and looked. I held the ladybug at arm's length and squinted. I brought it up against my eyeball. But none of that helped. I failed to see the ladybug's eye, let alone even one tiny eyelash.

Nancy, if you want to know how many eyelashes a ladybug has, you’re just going to have to count them yourself.

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  1. My eyesight started deteriorating when I was little due to a poorly placed UV light when I was in a humidicrib after I was born and I've worn glasses ever since, except for between sixteen and twenty when I wore contacts. But they were those old thick ones which, my ophtomologist tells me starved the blood vessel in my eyes so now I can't wear them for very long. I'd get laser surgery to get it fixed, but I'm genuinely scared of what they'd do wrong to stuff it up this time!

    1. Kellie,

      I'm sorry to hear about your eye problems. Oh, I can understand your reluctance to get laser surgery! I wonder how often things go wrong.

      I used to wear hard contact lenses, and then I developed an allergy to them. Like you, I couldn't wear my lenses for very long before they became too uncomfortable. After a couple of years of living in a blurry world again, I discovered disposable soft lenses which are permeable and kind to the eye. They have solved all my problems. I can't feel them at all. Have you ever tried these?

  2. Seeing how a ladybug has compound eyes, it must also have compound eyelashes, right? There could be hundreds of them. Yet, you saw not one. Please promise me you'll no longer drive at night - it appears that your eyesight is even worse than you suspected!

    God bless, Sue:-)

    1. Vicky,

      Compound eyes? You seem to know much more about ladybug's eyes than me. Perhaps you could count the eyelashes for Nancy!

      I could buy some special night driving glasses. I tried a pair once. They have a yellow tint that reduces the glare of reflected lights.

      The one thing that did work was stronger contact lenses. My prescription was a bit too high for my middle vision, but excellent for night vision. I was told I could order a pair of glasses to wear over my normal lenses. The glasses would give me just that extra bit of power to see at night. I think if I wanted to drive in the dark on a regular basis, I'd ordered some of these. But I rarely go out at night alone. Usually Andy is with me, and he drives and I'm happy to be the passenger.

      Don't worry. I'll never offer you a lift at night!

  3. Hilarious post!!! And wow (1 2 3) you really did blog about it! (4 5) I started needing glasses when I was twelve and talked my parents out of making me get them until I was (6) teen. But I wouldn't wear them (7 8) and thus I put off even driving until I was (9) teen. Wore prescription sunglasses driving even at night.... and somehow have lived to tell about it. And I am cracking up that you also (10 11 12) sat in movies unseeing! I never wore glasses on dates, and could not tell you how many movies I "heard" over the years. Thankfully you and I were both happy with our husbands once we saw them.

    13 14 15 ... oh wait. Guess I'd better get my glasses. I don't think this is a bug after all. Unless... do ladybugs have claws?

    1. Nancy,

      You first comment really livened up this story about vision problems. Thank you!

      Now I am laughing! You wouldn't wear glasses on dates either? Years later I watched all those movies again, wearing contact lenses. Wow! What a difference!

      "Thankfully you and I were both happy with our husbands once we saw them." I think that is so funny.

      You don't think it's a ladybug after all? Claws? You know, if I were you, I'd just ignore it. Look the other way. Take your glasses off and you'll never even see it. That bug sounds like more trouble than it's worth!

  4. I hate wearing glasses too. Thank goodness for contacts; however, my vision was never been that bad. Those who really need glasses wear them.

    1. Joyce,

      I am sure you are quite right: those people with very bad eyesight must feel grateful for their glasses. I know there's some very trendy frames available these days. I'm just hopeless at choosing the right frame for my face shape. I always come home with something I hate. I'm much happier with my contact lenses.

      Thank you for visiting my blog. It's lovely to meet you!

  5. Sue, how is it that ladybugs have eyelashes and I don't? BTW, I had the same problems you did pre-contact lenses days. I didn't wear them to my night outs and got a bunch of us lost. Funny post as always. I hope there are more letters after z... if not, I'll make them up so you can keep writing everyday.

    1. Anabelle,

      If I don't wear some mascara I look like I don't have any eyelashes either! You wear contact lenses too? Such a wonderful invention. I love your own short sight story.

      Anabelle, you really are kind wanting more alphabet stories. Thank you. There was I thinking you'll all be relieved when the last story gets posted tomorrow. Next year, everyone has got to do the challenge with me. What do you think? It might be lots of fun to do it together.

  6. Sue, since I am now 45, I have noticed something. Print has gotten smaller. On everything. Surely it's not my eyesight?! Nahh!!! They just use smaller print. That HAS to be it!!

    Robyn is legally blind.. she was born that way. Since she has been taking aquatics, we've had a bit of trouble since she can't wear her glasses in the pool or to dive, and she was in the pool sobbing because she was swimming into the sides of the pool, and we had to call out so she could follow our voices to the end of the pool. Poor kid! But.. *drum roll please* she is now the proud owner of prescription swim goggles. :) She can see well enough to READ in the pool now! Hahaa!!

    1. Susan,

      You are so right. I've noticed print getting smaller too! Thank goodness my Kindle allows me to have BIG print!

      Oh I can so understand Robyn's frustrations in the pool. Not being able to see properly (when I take out my contact lenses) is one of the reasons I don't like swimming. The other reason is I don't like to get wet!

      I am so pleased Robyn has got prescription googles. I didn't know such things exist. They will make such a difference. I hope she is enjoying the water now. Reading in the pool? Robyn must be a real bookworm! (I know that was a joke!)


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