Another step made towards Afghanistan

Aside from the embed papers I need to fill out with ISAF (International Security Assistance Force), in addition to registering with the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, and besides me needing to apply for a Visa I completed one important task today that gets me one step closer to Afghanistan.

I made an appointment with a ‘travel doctor’. Put ‘travel doctor’ into a Google search and you’ll come up with a number of places that will research for you the types of creepy-crawly intestinal problems you may encounter while traveling off the beaten path.

Wow! I get to choose from all of those?!

I was given a long list describing a number of diseases. The diseases that were highlighted are prevalent in Afghanistan. It’s an alarmingly long list: malaria, anthrax, hepatitis A & B, polio, tetanus/diptheria/acullular, rabies, influenza, tuberculosis, MMR, typhoid, & yellow fever. There’s a risk, albeit small, to pick up a number of illnesses and bugs in Afghanistan. I opted to get vaccinated against what I deemed to be the biggest threats: hepatitis A & B, typhoid and tetanus. As for the others, I’ll roll the dice, stay away from stray dogs and pack some mosquito repellent.

me getting shot in shoulder

Two shots in each shoulder. Hurts every time.

I suppose true germophobes don’t go to places like Afghanistan, but if they did ‘travel doctors’ would make a killing off of them. I will be going back in 30 days to get a booster and to pick up a prescription for some magical anti-diarrhea pills. The first time I was prescribed this wonder drug was prior to an embed in Iraq, that doctor told me “you’ll know when you need the first pill, take the second and third pills on the following days.” The stuff works like a charm and is worth 5 times its weight in gold.

As I sit here I recall the Porta-Pots at COB Basra. It was 100 degrees outside, probably 115 degrees inside…I’ll up its value to 10 times their weight in gold.