But It Can’t Suck the Poison Out of your Soul

Diary 2008.9.16

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“Ow! It hurts! It hurts!”
It must have been four in the morning. My partner Kyoko was in bed beside me, and her screams pierced through my foggy sleep-filled brain.

My Kyoko talks in her sleep a lot. Just an hour before, she had been modulating her voice like a TV interviewer, saying,
“Tell me what your thoughts are on the An-an.”
She cries and shrieks and suddenly bursts out laughing in her sleep on a regular basis.
She’s got rather a wide repertoire for someone who isn’t even awake.

So at first I just thought she was talking in her sleep again… but she got up and really seemed to be in pain.
Oh no! I panicked and jumped out of bed.

I turned on the light and looked around and, yep, there it was.
A 15 centimetre-long mukade – a poisonous centipede – was scurrying to hide under a pillow.

I hurried to get rid of the mukade, and then checked on Kyoko. She had one bite on her head in amongst her hair, and two on the middle finger of her right hand.
It wasn’t really the time and place to give a running commentary: “Hmm, she must have gotten bitten on the finger when she tried to brush it out of her hair after being bitten the first time.”
The mukade got some good bites in, and I knew if we left them they were going to swell up a lot.

We’ve been living up in the mountains for seven years now, so we’ve gotten used to dealing with this kind of thing.

First, you’ve got to extract the poison.

Before the mukade’s poison can circulate through your whole body, you’ve got to suck it out of the place where you’ve been bitten. In the movies, they cut the wound with a knife and suck the poison out using the old-fashioned suck-and-spit method, but I don’t think that’s very healthy for the sucker. For a mukade I guess I could handle it, but I wouldn’t want to try it with a mamushi snake bite.

Not to mention, if the wound is on the person’s arm or something it’s doable, but like tonight when it’s the head that has been bitten, just the thought of chomping down on someone’s head and sucking away like it’s a coconut just doesn’t paint a pretty picture for me. Beloved wife or no, I’d like to avoid it if I can.

If you want to do it wild-style like Steve MacQueen I won’t stop you, but these days there’s a handy tool you can use instead.

“The Poison Extractor”

They sell it in outdoor supply shops. It’s a special suction tool for extracting poison.

You put the tip of the extractor against the wound and push in the plunger, and the special valve creates pressure in the adapter part, and the poison is sucked out of the wound. There's a similar tool called Dr. Hessel's Insect Poison Remover, but the Extractor has stronger suction.
I took care of the finger first, then on to the bite on her head.
Kyoko really seemed to be in pain, but her hair was in the way and I couldn’t get a good seal; the suction was too weak.
There was nothing else to do but shave a little 1cm patch around the bite and try again.
Then, I got good pressure and out from the wound came some yellowish serum-looking fluid mixed with blood. “Aah, it’s out. It doesn’t hurt so much now.”
This woman, the makings of both her body and soul are relatively simple to understand.

After extracting the poison, it was on to Bach Flower rescue remedy.
We have the drops you put under your tongue as well as the external spray type, so first I put some under her tongue to calm her down, then the spray on the wound to lessen the pain.

If I tried to explain it in detail it would take a long time, but for our non-drug taking household this stuff gets a lot of use. Last year when the cancer in my belly burst and I almost went over there, this was a big help. Mind you, according to traditional western medicine, it has “no effect whatsoever.”

On top of that, a homeopathic remedy for insect bites.
One little pellet under the tongue for it to be absorbed gradually.

This too is the timid witch (?) medicine of the modern medical world. However in England there is a nationally funded Homeopathy Association, and it's relatively mainstream...

To top it off, the secret elixer of the amazon, a balm called Mali-mali, which uses extract of a plant called copaiba. We put a bit of this on and that was the end of the treatment.

Mali-mali, what a cute name! This is very good on burns as well.


In the end, most of her pain was eliminated right there, and by the next morning, Kyoko had forgotten that she’d been bitten by a mukade at all.

She didn’t have any swelling, and all that was left was a little one yen bald patch on her head.

I’m thinking of getting an extra extractor for the KAIR artists to keep at their housing complex, who aren’t used to mukade and get upset whenever one comes around. What does everyone else think?

It seems like this year’s artists all have a bit of witch in them as well…


  • We would love to have the extrator next to our bed. But maybe also a shaver for my head. Pat and Karin

    09/16/2008 5:55 PM | karin

  • I'd love to get an extractor myself. Can we get it in Tokushima City? I have a super long pair of BBQ tongs next to my mattress to get the mukade quickly but the Extractor sounds like ultimate tool to have. I LOVE Dr. Bach's Rescue Remedy, have used it a lot and it has been very effective for me.

    09/16/2008 6:23 PM | Andrea

  • A dosen of the Extractor are expected to arrive at Kamiyama tommorrow through Amazon. Sounds nice, doesn't it?

    09/16/2008 11:35 PM | chan

  • Hello Chan and Keko, I don't have your mail adres but maybe true this way. We still think off you a lot and are wandering how thinks are going now. We mis Kamiyama a lot in this rain and cold Holland ove Pat and Karin pat@pavlovproducties.nl

    09/16/2008 4:40 PM | karin

  • hi ! Pat and Karin this is nikolai who unexpected ha!ha!ha! Chan is still lying we all hope he will be recovered quickly !

    09/16/2008 10:29 PM | ニコライ

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