OK, as those few of you who occasionally visit this space can attest, I have a very short attention span and find it impossible to stay on the same subject for very long. Nonetheless, it is necessary to return to one, a rather arcane one at that, less than twelve months after having first addressed it . * Rabies.
You know it is going to be something cool when your kids call in the middle of the night. Like about 3:00AM a few Saturdays ago. Picked up the phone and youngest daughter – who I knew to be in Costa Rica – was on the line. “Dad! I’m freaking out! I think I’m going to die!” She had plenty of breath so I figured her demise was probably not exactly imminent so I asked what was up.
“I’m staying in this open air hostel in the middle of the jungle and I just woke up with some sort of huge possum or rat biting my toe! There’s blood everywhere. Think I’m going to die?” Well, I thought, she probably won’t exsanguinate if only her big toe was involved. “Everybody’s got to go sometime.” I replied, “but I don’t think this will be yours. You’re going to have to get rabies vaccination when you get home though”.
After she hung up I messaged Dr Brother who agreed about the rabies series and said that she should organize some antibiotics. Fine teeth of small rodents or marsupials insert bacteria more deeply with less likelihood of being easily washed off than, say, in the case of a dog bite. Just as wife began to rub her eyes and make inquiries phone rang again and daughter asked “figure anything out yet?”
“Ya, I’m glad you’re on your own insurance. When I got the rabies shots it cost me several thousand dollars. Also, I talked with your uncle and he said that you should get some antibiotics or something in the morning. Is there a witch doctor in the village?” “Thanks Dad… I’ll find a pharmacy”, which she did later that morning and at which she discussed her allergies and arranged a course of ‘Ciprofloxacina’ with the help of her IPhone and Google Translate.
She returned to her home in the mountains of Colorado without further drama where we visited her on part of a previously planned trip a few weeks later. It was fun to accompany her for the first round of shots. It had been a long while since she’d had an injection and she didn’t believe me when I said that they really didn’t hurt. Much to her surprise then, the first of six – tetanus – brought a smile to her face. “You’re right!” she said.
However, she wasn’t thrilled at the prospect of loading up her big toe up with gamma globulin which process you can see below. I said that I wouldn’t be either, but that it was going to be much easier for me to observe than watching the orthopedic doc some years prior stick a big needle in deep behind her kneecap.
In the event, she did drop an F bomb, quietly, and the docs laughed happy to have counterpoint to my commentary.
*June 15, 2012 “Exercise is stupid”