Friday 28th September 2018

Six Weeks To Go & Counting

Published: Monday, September 5th, 2011

Mosquito imageIt’s hard to believe that in just 42 days time I’ll be heading off to sunny South Africa for the adventure of a lifetime.

I’ve still got a huge ‘To-Do’ list to work my way through and I’m ashamed to admit that I’ve barely considered ‘motocross training’ for quite some time now, so I’m feeling somewhat daunted by the lack of time left to prepare.  Time to get myself back on track methinks!

Despite several calls from the Global Enduro team gently prompting me, checking passport details and confirming flights etc, I’ve somehow managed to squeeze myself an unscheduled break from my meticulously planned physical and mental preparations. 

Oh, I haven’t been completely neglectful. I’ve managed to organise some (expensive!) ‘hazardous activity’ travel insurance and I’ve bought myself a Platypus hydration bag, as well as generally sticking to a regime of briskly walking at least 4 miles a day.  But the list of things I haven’t done yet is frightening!

For instance, I’ve just been reading the health advice offered by the FCO and I’m shocked! Here is a brief extract…

  • Rift Valley fever has been reported in the Eastern and Western Cape Provinces. Most human infections of the viral illness are contracted through direct contact with animal blood or flesh. If you are planning to visit game reserves you should take particular care.
  • TB, rabies, malaria and cholera are common to South Africa. Malaria is common to Kruger Park and parts of the Mpumalanga, Limpopo and KwaZulu Natal (particularly the Wetlands area around St Lucia) provinces.
  • In August 2010 two cases of rabies were confirmed in Sophiatown, Johannesburg. Two other cases were reported during July 2010 in other parts of Johannesburg (Eldorado Park and Kibler Park). State veterinarians are vaccinating animals in the area and Gauteng state veterinarians are offering free vaccinations for domestic pets. The Gauteng Agriculture and Rural Development Department advises all domestic pets should be vaccinated (this is compulsory for cats aged over 3 months and all dogs), and that you should not approach sick animals.

Oh my word… Rift valley fever, TB, rabies, malaria, cholera!!! Do I need vaccinations? Have I got time to get them all? I’ve just checked the NetDoctor site and some of them need to be sorted up to 3 months in advance of travel. Help!

Well, that’s it. Break well and truly over. If I don’t get my skates on, it looks like I stand a very good chance of coming home in a box!

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