Monday, August 7, 2006

Fat Hand Lisa

It seems that on every camping trip I get some sort of strange ailment. On my first trip into Algonquin Park, I was inflicted with a bad case of Impetigo on my nose. It is a very unattractive skin infection caused by the strep virus. Since there were no mirrors on the trip, I had no idea what I was dealing with. I kept asking my canoe mates what it looked like and they assured me that it was just a zit and that it would be gone by Sunday. Well Sunday came and we portaged back out of the park to our waiting car. I gazed into the rear view mirror to take in the full horror of the skin infection on my nose. I turned to my friends, wondering why they had not told me how bad I looked. They all shrugged and nodded sheepishly, in solidarity, as if to say: yeah, we lied - you're hideous. I mean, what could we have done in the park? Needless to say, there is no photo of what we now refer to as my "SARS Nose". Ten days of antibiotics got rid of it, and I'm happy to report no repeat infections.

This year we are in Killarney, and I have tons of antibiotic cream, just in case. After our first meal of giant & delicious steaks, Joe and I were washing the dishes by the edge of the lake. Some persistent wasps kept buzzing around us and landing on our dishes. Then Joe got stung. Yikes. It must have really hurt. I am a bit more sensitive to insect bites and have been known to swell, so I tried to take it easy. But, I couldn't let the wasps keep me from my dishwashing duty. I returned to the rock and within seconds, one of the pesky things stung me on the finger. OUCH. It really, really hurt. I had a much better appreciation now for Joe's pain. And then it started. The swelling. From my middle finger, to my hand and then up my arm. I took some antihistamines immediately, which I'm sure helped, but they could not neutralize all the poison in my body right away. It took about three days for the swelling to go down, and I could not paddle on our day trip the second day. And for the entire trip I was known as Fat Hand Lisa.

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