Following on from the splendid lead of Richard Carroll’s experiences with a lethal snake, I thought I would add my short story of unpleasant experiences to the brew, so here is my account of dealing with Malaria some years ago.
Some years ago my wife and I were working in Angola – an interesting experience! Towards the end of our stay in Angola I was unlucky enough to catch malaria one day. It seems there are two types of malaria, the one that most people get, and which reoccurs at regular intervals for the rest of your life, or the other main sort, cerebral malaria, which basically kills you in about 72 hours of it kicking in.
Being me, I of course had the cerebral variety.
As chance would have it, when the malaria struck me, I was up country in Huambo, visiting and supposedly helping the Halo Trust deminers with various computer problems. As it turned out, this was extremely lucky for me, as I was in an area where malaria was horribly common, and all the local Angolan doctors knew all about it – unlike the worthy western doctors one tended to see in Luanda (the capitol of Angola) who habitually treated people with malaria symptoms for flu, as a colleague who was infected on the same day as I was, and who as a result of the misdiagnosis almost died and had to be evacuated to South Africa when it was belatedly realised he was on the point of dying from cerebral malaria, and not simply suffering from a bad go of flu.
As the night passed, my head ache got worse, and I had bad stomach aches and dizziness attacks… But I managed to sleep more or less. However the following morning I told the others that I would spend the day in bed, assuming that a day’s rest and lots of paracetamol would fix me up.
I have never felt so bad in my entire life, and it simply kept getting worse, so when I was in the cold phase of my fever, I was scared I was going to break my teeth as I was shaking so hard and my teeth were chattering so hard.
Once I was more or less back in the word of the living, he explained what the prognosis was if I hadn’t managed to see a doctor before another night had passed – simply put, I would have been dead.
Anyhow, thanks to whatever the medicine was that he had given me, I didn’t die (you may be surprised to read), and he prescribed some medicine that I would have to take for the next month or so, and told me the worst possible news as well – no beer for at least a month!
And of course, extremely glad that Nathaniel was there to save me as well!!!! Quite literally his prompt actions saved my life, for which I am eternally grateful to him of course.