Cycling across the United States I witnessed the mass hatching of a cicada species that appears for just a few days every 17 years. In this report I described how local people were reacting to the insects.
The sensation of an insect, about the size of a large prawn, crashing into my mouth and against the back of my throat, caused panic beyond anything I’d experienced before. I feared I had a wasp, a bee or even a hornet, gearing up to strike the base of my tongue. As the unknown critter buzzed nervously, my parched inner cheeks flinched and contorted.
I spluttered and growled as the animal wiggled and waggled across my back teeth. I was two and a half thousand miles into a 4,000-mile cycle race from America’s West to east coast – flat tyres, sun burn and dehydration were my usual causes for concern.
You can listen to the dispatch in this episode of From Our Own Correspondent.
May 23, 2016