scars of travelling in central america

Scarred

I think that in general, human bodies are a bit travel-phobic. It´s amazing how much they dislike the water, food and germs of other-than-home environments. Last week, five of my six roommates were bed-ridden sick. Two made midnight trips to the hospital. One is still there. All are dropping daily doses of Antibiotics in quantities that are probably outlawed in most modern countries.

Seven months of Central American travel has taught me that ANY long-term (3-plus months) traveler will receive the following *what I call* “scars”:

1. They WILL be robbed.

2. They WILL get Amoebas.

What are Amoebas?

“..naked freshwater or marine or parasitic protozoa that form temporary pseudopods for feeding and locomotion” (www.Dictionary.com)

They are parasites..*grimaces*..that live in your stomach… *cringes*… and mass reproduce… *shudders*… and force you to lay in your bed in gut wrenching pain until your roommate, tired of your constant moaning, drags your in-denial-ass to the doctor *which in Guatemala, inspires a terror of its own* to get antibiotics. The drugs essentially nuke the little bastards, as well as everything else in your digestive and immunity systems. Yeah. Not so pretty. But if you´re young, you´ll survive. 🙂

All of the long-term volunteers also suffer from a mysterious cold virus, that apparently lasts as long as one works for the project. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that we work in a dumpster and pass through billowing clouds of smoke from burning toxic substances and trash each day? Maybe? Maybe. All I know is that I´ve completed my VERY first month of being sick-free. Maybe the daily vitamins, prescription allergy medicine, extra 500 mg of VC, 100mg of Echinacea and daily cup of Guatemalan anti-viral tea are doing something? Maybe. *knocks on all furniture made of wood within a 10 ft radius*

*re-reads entry* And did I mention that I had to trudge though 5 feet of snow, barefoot, for twenty miles to get to the doctor? Rambling on like an 80-yr old grandmother. Somebody shut me up. My valid *but lost* point behind the rambling: that behind ever “scar” is an adventure worth experiencing and a story worth telling (and *maybe* worthy also of a little lost blood, pocket money, digital camera, or weight).

*****

The weekend in El Salvador was….*pauses*….ya know? I´m really running out of good descriptive words for my travels. How many times I can I say I had a “wicked/awesome/incredible weekend” before people stop believing me and conclude that I´m actually just a fictional computer geek with an active imagination, who makes up a bunch of fantasy adventures and posts them online? *raises eyebrow*

*winks*

A full roll of film on its way to the developers. Stories and pictures to be included in a later post. 🙂 Off to do the ditty.

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