Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Swine Flu and other stories

I haven’t blogged for a while, as the family and I had to take a flying trip back to Australia.
Ironically, most of the trip involved spending time with our favourite GPs, specialists and other health carers, in a bid to keep us, well, healthy.
So how crappy was it that both Kyle and I managed to pick up a nasty version of the Brisbane flu? Okay, at least it wasn’t Swine Flu, but that didn’t stop my NZ doctor whipping a facemask on me, lest I wipe out half his surgery waiting room!
Though we didn’t get to catch up with my family this time, we were able to stay with Nana, who ferried us wherever we needed to go and spoiled the kids rotten.
We also caught up with a few dear friends, and managed a visit to the Rocklea Markets, a regular haunt when we were living in Brisbane.
Our flights, with Pacific Blue, were a delight, because the staff are always so happy and clearly love their jobs. Yes, you don’t get all the added extras, like free food and drink, but you get flight attendants who clearly love what they are doing, and pilots who are happy to land on time (or ahead of time).
On the way to Brisbane, the flight attendants took all the kids down the back of the bus, and painted their faces. Then they held a fashion parade, up and down the aisle of the plane, as passengers clapped.
Later, another flight attendant (who we were told made it into the finals of NZ Idol), held an on-board seated aerobics session.
“Smoking is disgusting, and cannot be done until well inside the terminal building,” went another public service message.
Finally, we arrived in Auckland, where our local doctor took one look at me and slapped a Facemask on me. As you do.
Though Australia seems to have forgotten the Swine Flu epidemic, NZ authorities are still being cautious.
With my condition worsening, I had to return a few days later, only to be treated as even more of a leper.
This time, the doctor himself donned mask and gloves before examining me, and a nurse did the same before doing a swab to rule out Swine Flu and hopefully discover which flu virus I’ve bought into the country.
Apparently, since I’ve had a flu injection and been felled by flu anyway, I’m just what authorities need to decide what to put in next year’s flu vaccine.
Oh well, I’m glad that something good has come from all my misery!
When it was all over, I was told to put my mask back on, and leave the building as quickly as possible, not even to bother to pay. For a minute, I thought this Swine Flu-like virus wasn’t all bad, until the doctor helpfully added that I could fix them up next time. When I’m not so diseased.
Got to love the Kiwi Medic's bedside manner...

1 comment:

Honey the Great Dane said...

Ha! Ha! That is the funniest story! I could just picture the GP's surgery, from what you were describing...hee! hee! hee!

I know it's good and here to protect us and preserve this beautiful island but ometimes NZ's obsessive biosecurity can be a bit annoying...we've experienced it this week too as a dog treat that was sent by one of Honey's blog friends, all the way from the UK, has become a victim of MAF's paranoia...I feel more bad for the dog owners who had so lovingly chosen it and sent it for Honey's pleasure from so far away! What a wasted effort!

Anyway, glad your flu wasn't the "exotic" variety...but do hope you get better soon!

Hsin-Yi