I know travel nurses are meant to give comprehensive travel advice, but mine went for the overkill. She insisted on printing out every page for every African country we may even potentially set a foot in. As we are travelling through Tanzania, and many people climb Mount Kilimanjaro from there, I even got a leaflet on altitude sickness.
For the record, I have no intention to get anywhere near the summit of a mountain. I am sure AH would have loved a quick climb up – he climbed to the summit as a boy – but I am glad there will be no time on our trip for another mountain adventure. (Although I have already been threatened with water adventures – it’s apparently dead cheap hiring katamarans and double kajaks at Lake Malawi...)
My first serious injection was for Yellow Fever. I found out afterwards that one of the (very rare!) side effects of the vaccination is death... No, I did not cross over from the anxious to the neurotic at that point. I trusted that my body was a fairly run of the mill body and could therefore cope with all necessary vaccinations.
Then I got my typhoid injection and was no longer so sure. For about half a day it felt as if I had done 100 one-armed press-ups.
AH did of course not know what I was talking about and continued to lift heavy items with the usual ease. He always seems to be in the lucky majority when it comes to side effects.
We have also been advised to get 3 injections against rabies. I was not too keen, as I have no intention to get within stroking distance of any animal (and the injections do not really immunise you; they just buy you time to get yet more injections should you even so much as get licked by an animal) - but even AH decided it was a wise precaution. (When he grew up, there were frequent rabies outbreaks in Kenya...)
We are currently hunting for the cheapest way to get our anti-malaria tablets. Malarone can cost up to £3 per tablet. (The way we are going, our medication will be more expensive than the trip itself.)
AH wonders whether he really needs the best and most expensive anti-malarials on the market: “After all, I’m tough.” I know, dear, and I wish I could say the same about me...