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Sep 27, 2010 07:44 PM

Getting insect bites while dining indoors?

I was having dinner at a restaurant in NYC on Sat night. It was really warm so I a wore a dress with open toe sandals. Halfway through dinner my left lower leg/ankle area suddenly got really itchy. I went to the restroom to check, sure ehough there were 3 small bites on my ankle and lower calf.

I was sitting inside near the window - the table was next to the service station and another empty table. None of the other diners at my table were bitten but they were all wearing long trousers.

I didn't think a mosquito could get through double glass doors unless the timing was really lucky. Just a little worried since this has never happened to me before and I don't know what type of insect caused the bites. There were no service animals in the restaurant. Is this usual during warm weather, even when dining indoors/has this happened to people before? Would a restaurant want to be informed if their customers are getting bitten during service s they can call in someone to spray the area?

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  1. I'm in Florida and just opening and closing a door in the regular course of the evening will allow mosquitoes in. There are other biting insects that are much harder to see that might also have caused the bites. I don't really know what the restaurant can do, other than make sure it doesn't prop the door open or even hold it open for people to enter for long periods of time.

    1. All sorts of bedbug stories in NYC recently. Movie theaters, retail shops (Niketown had to close for a week), etc. If this is a bedbug that bit you, you should notify the restaurant so they can deal with it as it will only get worse.

      1. I saw a news article where bedbugs bite usually 3 times in the same area. They can be carried in purses, etc. So that is the most likely culprit. I would definitely contact the restaurant with the info.

        2 Replies
        1. re: boyzoma

          I hate to say it, but they very well may be bed bug bites. They do usually come in threes-also known as breakfast, lunch and dinner. The other piece of info you may not want to hear is that they usually don't pop out immediately, so you may not have been bitten at the restaurant...

          1. re: andieb

            My thought as well. Possibly bed bugs. Probably not gotten at dinner, but just noticed at the restaurant. More likely if they were bed bugs they were gotten earlier in an environment more conducive to bed bug dining and you just noticed the bites there.

            I stayed one night in an east coast city hotel earlier this summer, before all the publicity about bed bugs, and noticed early a group of bites on my arms early the next afternoon. Confirmed as bed bugs by the hotel and when I got home by my doctor (the hotel asked me to get it checked so they could document it).

            Good news is that the bites went away fairly quickly and left no scars. They healed quicker than a lot of mosquito bites I've had. Still completely disgusting.

        2. Oh god, I was really hoping it wouldn't be bed bugs so I didn't mention it in the OP. I had heard all the stories about numerous shops in NYC having to shut down because of bed bug infestations and had avoided going into the city. So do I now have to worry about having possibly brought them home with me?? ugh!

          Before the dinner, my husband and I had some drinks at a bar/pub a few blocks away. Our dining companions are out of town visitors and staying at a hotel in Times Square. The wife was seated to my left but she didn't have a purse with her, just a small clutch bag.

          I guess I'll let the restaurant know.

          3 Replies
          1. re: SeoulQueen

            Its probably for the best. The newscast I watched actually said when you come home from being out, you should empty out your purse and spray it. The little critters can latch onto anything (even a clutch purse). They hide in the seams of everything - even coat liners, etc. Pretty scary little critters.

            1. re: boyzoma

              I was at the theater in NYC a few weeks ago and during intermission I noticed that two of the seats at the end of my row had been completely covered with what looked like giant-size plastic trash bags. I guess the occupants of those seats weren't taking any chances on bed bugs hitching a ride home with them.

              1. re: CindyJ

                I heard about the movie theatre infestation, I've avoided going to the movie theatres so far. I read the article about the bed bug infestations in UES in the New York magazine several months ago and I DO NOT want them to get into my house. It's been a week and so far, no sign of bed bugs or any more bites, thank goodness.

          2. I had the same experience years ago in a burger joint on the UWS. It never occurred to me to mention it to the restaurant, and I assumed the bites were from fleas, not mosquitoes. It was a dog-friendly restaurant! But they definitely weren't bedbugs.

            2 Replies
            1. re: janniecooks

              After the dinner, we went to a bar for drinks and then took a taxi so I'm hoping if they were bedbugs, the critters dropped off somewhere during the rest of the night? I just checked my purse, sprayed it with a cleaner and checked the purse bag as well. Don't see anything.

              The bites are not swelling up like red welts so hopefully it was something else? I don't mind if it's anything else... just not bed bugs!

              1. re: SeoulQueen

                If it helps any, whenever I've been somewhere and suddenly felt ankle bites, it's been fleas, not bedbugs. OTOH, I wouldn't rule it out, given your proximity to the hotel guest; a recent survey of over 700 rooms found that one in four has them: BLEAH.