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Entries in Malaria (1)


We call it Malaria Monday

In planning for our trip to Tanzania, not only did we have to get passports for all the kids, visas for everyone, but we also had to get the requisite shots: typhoid, hep A/B, polio booster, tetanus booster, which much to my disappointment did not combine into the super-soldier formula and change my physique to that of Captain America. (Though the tetanus shot did make my bicep swell for a few days, does that count?)

In addition, each week now begins with what my teens have now ominously dubbed "Malaria Monday," in which we all take our Mefloquine. I argued that there is also malaria-fighting quinine in a tall gin & tonic with lime, unfortunately my pharmacist must have fallen down and broken his humorous.

But here's the really crazy thing about Mefloquine, and I mean crazy in the best possible sense in that this particular anti-malarial is also a hefty neuropsychiatric drug, which as a side-effect causes intensely vivid dreams. And by vivid I mean red pill/blue pill Matrix kind of journeys across time and space.

So even before I hit the airport I'll have flown around the world a few times.

Oh, and in case you're wondering what the top ten diseases in Pommern are, here's a list from the village health clinic run by Dr. Godlove (who has the coolest, most appropriate name of any doctor, ever).

No, the big killer in Africa is not AIDS, despite what the big, scary news-reporting agencies might infer. It's Malaria that kills. Followed by diarrhea and malnutrition, and to a greater degree...apathy.