Thursday, June 2, 2011

Unearthly hour

Apart from the blurry photo, can anyone guess what it's all about?

Yesterday Grant felt ill - feverish, shaky with aching joints so he went to the company clinic for a malaria test. Sister Jo-Anne had gone to El Doret with a patient and as she's the only one who runs the test, Grant was asked to return later on that evening.  At 6, I went along with Grant but Jo-Anne had still not returned and the technician on duty said he'd phone us when she did. Straight after dinner, Grant went to bed and when I joined him at 10, he was tossing and turning and very hot to the touch. By midnight his groans woke me and he was so hot that I offered to drive him to the clinic to see if Jo-Anne had arrived. He did what most men do: he refused. Resigned,  I turned around and tried to get some sleep.

At 2.25, I woke up again, Grant was sitting up and clutching his head (one of the symptoms is a sever headache) and this time he looked so ill that I decided to phone the clinic to see if anyone could help us. When I picked up Grant's mobile which he'd left in the diningroom, I saw there'd been a missed call from the technician at 11pm! I promptly returned the call and the technician answered, saying we should come to the clinic immediately. When we arrived, the technician told us that Jo-Anne had done the test when she returned at 11 and it was postive. Grant had malaria. Fortunately there is an anti-malarial drug which once you've taken the first of three large tablets, begins to work against the virus.

To get to the clinic you have to drive through a village which was very dark yesterday morning : no street lights, no security lights. Halfway,  we came across a flock of goats sleeping in the middle of the sandy road. They were very reluctant to move so I got out of the vehicle and trotted through the sleepy animals waving my arms and shooe-ing them softly. If the owner had looked out of his house and seen a fifty-something Mzungu (foreigner) woman dancing with his goats at 3am, he'd probably shake his head and go back to bed!  When we returned from the clinic, the goats were - you guessed it - asleep in the road. I got out of the car again and did my nifty little number again so that Grant could drive through without causing any injuries to Kenyan livestock. 

By yesterday evening, Grant got up, showered and ate his first meal since the night before. He's feeling much better today and has gone to work.

All's well, that ends well.  


  1. Scary..... Glad you got him to the clinic and glad he is feeling better. That's obviously nothing to mess around with... He was one sick man, wasn't he???

    Prayers and Hugs,

  2. How scary for you, Jo. Not just Grant, but the goats, too.
    (I hope you have a chance to check your e-mail to see if the story is okay. I sent it twice.)
    All the best to Grant.
    Luv — K

    Kay, Alberta, Canada
    An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

  3. Glad he's OK. That malaria really clobbers you fast. Thank God the cure is fast as well. Blessings to you both.

  4. Drama in the jungle. Malaria is an awful illness. Lucky there are tablets to help so quickly. It sure is a test of your strength to deal with illness and goats sleeping on the road in the back blocks of Africa. Hope Grant is better now.

  5. Oi, what a story. Malaria and goats on road seem to be a local hazard.
    Best wishes to Grant for a good recovery.

  6. Glad to hear that Grant is feeling better Jo - I lost a dear friend to malaria a few years ago and I had a bad bout of it myself ... there were times during the illness that I just wished I was dead and, even today, I can't drink alcohol because of what malaria did to my system ...

    ... it's a shame that Grant was unable to get a pic of you dancing with Goats ... :)

  7. Scary story but we're glad for the happy ending. We have to agree that a picture of the goat dance would have been great fun.

    Darryl and Ruth : )

  8. Oh Goodness Jo!!! Poor Grant!
    SO glad the tech finally called back and he was able to get some help!!!
    Bless your hearts...

  9. OMG ! poor Grant good that the shot helped so quickly ! I only wished I could have been a little mouse to watch your "Dancing with the goats" !
    My friend Ilona had catched Malaria when she was a teenager and lived in the Congo, of course she had medications, but from time to time it comes back, but not so strong as with Grant.

  10. What a night of worry you had Jo. So glad to hear all is well again. Nice goats though . . .

  11. Wow! Thank God for medicine! This is one adventure I would't want to experience. And you had the clarity to document it with your camera! LOL! Glad Grant is feeling better.

  12. The anti-malarial medication seems to work like magic, Jo, unless Grant is just super-fit and healthy! So glad you were able to get him to the clinic to begin treatment even though it was a trip you're unlikely to ever forget! Big hug for you glad Grant is well on the mend! xoxo

  13. Sorry Grant was so ill, but sounds as if the pills are working already.
    Interesting photos of your midnight ride. The first one looks like an out of body experience -- which may be how you felt at the time!
    Funny that you had to get out and chase the goats off the road.

  14. That sounded very scary for you and Grant. You've heard of the movie, "Dancing with Wolves" ? You should write the script for "Dancing with Goats." Hilarious, even though it was a scary night.


Thank you for visiting my blog and taking the time to leave a comment. I appreciate your feedback. Jo