October 23, 2009


Travel's not all post cards 'n roses. Sometimes visiting beautiful exotic places boils down to digestive discomfort and painful red bug bites and vomiting in public. The US State Department's Travel Warnings should always be served with a double dose of Sodium as they are often outdated and ethnocentric (not to mention massive generalizations); however, when it comes to deadly diseases and such, I do like to take my dime store precautions--especially before heading off to new latitudes.

Over the years I've collected a nice little trophy case of vaccinations. Some of these expire from time to time--like car registrations and jars of mayonnaise in the back of the fridge. Others last a lifetime. Anticipating upcoming travels to feverish climes, I got myself three new injections: yellow fever, typhoid, and the generic, vanilla flu shot. I am also begging Santa to give me my very own H1N1 flu vaccine before Christmas but that seems to be this year's Tickle-Me Elmo: outrageously popular and unconvincingly elusive. I shall have to keep sending letters and cookies to the North Pole.

I could bore you with my op ed series on malaria prophylaxis but I'll wait for a slow news month. I think I'm a skeptic at heart but depending on where and when I'm traveling, I will pop those crazy pills.

Thus today I blog with a sore left arm and a touch of self-pity as I contemplate all the things in the jungle that they DON'T make vaccines for. Like jaguars and anachronistic Marxist ideologies.

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