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I have heard there will be blue butterflies

February 19, 2011

There’s nothing like a visit to the County Health Travel Nurse to make you feel paranoid about traveling. At home you are looking at colorful guidebooks featuring photos of azure skies, palm trees and white sand beaches. At the nurse, she pulls out brochures with photos of mosquitoes and tells you about dengue fever.

It’s like the nursing version of mommyblogging – one minute you think you are doing a good job as a parent, and the next you read something that makes you consider getting a CamelBak full of hand sanitizer.

Apparently the only place to get typhoid shots in this county is at Public Health. I had to get typhoid shots because I’m going to Costa Rica. Did I mention that I’m going to Costa Rica? I’m going to Costa Rica. NOT on a mission trip. Not for anything worthwhile. Just for the hell of it.

My BFF CC and I decided to go. She has a month off work, thanks to a budget-cutting government policy of giving her a couple unpaid days a month. She saved them all up. So now the kind citizens won’t have anyone to process their paperwork for a month, because she will be strolling the cobblestone streets of San Jose. Hey, taxpayers, if you want service, you have to PAY for it. Otherwise, adios, amigos. Que le vaya bien.

I’m not going for a month, just 10 days. But I’m GOING!

The original plan was to go to Buenos Aires, but I wasn’t feeling it. Then we talked about every other Spanish-speaking country on earth (one of our vacay requirements was that we get to practice our Spanish). Peru? Too altitudey. Spain? Too expensive. Venezuela? Too Hugo Chavez-y. Mexico? The drug cartel situation. I lobbied hard for Cartagena, Colombia, but got shot down. So. Costa Rica.

We’re going to the Caribbean side, which the nurse told me is infested with malarial mosquitoes and typhoid, as well as some great beaches. I’m not worried. Oh, ho, not ME. I never worry about anything. Poison snakes, too. I’m sure it will be fine.

I should shut up and quit whining. I’m really excited. Not about dengue fever, but maybe I’ll see a quetzal.
Quetzal 03
Ojala que sí.

Photo by Fabio Bretto. Used under a creative commons license.

  1. February 19, 2011 15:58

    I went to Costa Rica on my honeymoon and it was FANTASTIC. I do believe we saw some blue butterflies. We actually went to the west coast, and no one needed a typhoid shot. You will have a wonderful time. There are a lot of really amazing things in that country.

    • February 20, 2011 21:13

      I think the travel nurse errs on the side of caution. And I can’t wait to see blue butterflies!

  2. February 19, 2011 16:01

    Hope you have so much fun! I stopped there once on a cruise, just for a day, but I loved it.

    • February 20, 2011 21:13

      Everyone I know who has been loved it there.

  3. February 19, 2011 16:26

    My son went to Ecuador last summer. He had the oral typhoid vaccine. Two doses, but it lasts 5 years instead of 2. He had all his shots at Sansum clinic in Santa Barbara.

    • February 20, 2011 21:12

      Hm. I got the shot and am good with that. And am tolerating the malaria pills, so that’s good!

  4. neeroc permalink
    February 19, 2011 17:59

    Sounds wonderful! Cannot wait for the pictures. And I second the oral vaccine.

  5. February 19, 2011 22:42

    oh! You are going to have SO much fun!

    • February 20, 2011 21:11

      I hope so. CC was supposed to make reservations and has basically trashed the itinerary and switched things all around. I’m trying not to panic.

  6. February 20, 2011 22:36

    It was only a few years ago that you could get into Costa Rica with just your driver’s license. I used to send students down there on volunteer programs. Never had any issues.

    Then again I went to Germany and got chicken pox and ended up in the hospital for 6 days. You just never know. You just have to go with the flow.

    • February 21, 2011 18:16

      Going with the flow is so not in my nature, Chris.

  7. February 22, 2011 12:15

    Wow, that is going to be amazing! You will have a wonderful time.

    • February 22, 2011 12:54

      I am getting more and more happy about it as the warnings from the travel nurse wear off in my mind.

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