Monday, June 6, 2011

Gearing up for Ghana

So I may have mentioned that as part of my summer travels this year, I'm spending a week in Ghana with the Queenager. We are finally getting to visit the school we support and we're very excited.

I will also confess to being a smidge apprehensive on account of the mosquitoes. I like to think of myself as hale and hearty, but the truth is that I always get bitten alive by bitey things and quite often, the bites swell into embarrassing lumps that cause alarm to close friends, family and often complete strangers. (One time, in Jamacia, the locals were stopping me in the street to exclaim about the quantity of bites.)

We are taking malaria precautions, and I've visited the travel clinic at Northwestern hospital in Chicago, so it's all good. (Only three more vaccines to go. Yay.) They  have a list of creams they recommend, and other bits and bobs to help fight the pesky blood suckers. Apparently you can buy clothing that repels mosquitoes. For some reason, I thought that in this day and age, said clothing might look grunge-ish and hip. But no.

Apparently this is what's recommended for preventing bites to the ankle.

And then there's this charming little number for protecting the face. Doesn't really grab me for some reason.

And I have no idea how or why this is supposed to protect against mosquitoes, unless the idea is they get  trapped in the raggy bits.
I think I'll stick with heavy application of creams and sprays.


  1. Wow. Looking forward to hearing all about the trip. It will be a real experience.

  2. Sounds like a very exciting trip.
    Hope you don't get eaten alive.
    I had a very horrid attack by mosquitoes in a French wood.
    Nobody else seemed affected but they loved my blood.
    Maggie X

    Nuts in May

  3. I remember a horrible plague of mosquitoes we had in the 60's. All of us kids walked around with huge welts on our bodies and limbs. It was awful. I hope you won't suffer too much.

  4. I MUST know what those raggy things are. Where do you put them? What are they called? Good luck with the mosquitoes; when we traveled to a jungle lodge in Belize, we were told to take malaria pills, which we did (bizarre nightmares) but I never got a single bite (kids did, though.) On the other hand ,while cave-tubing I got a small scratch from a rock which apparently was just crawling with antibiotic-resistant Belizian cave bacteria, although this did not become apparent until a week or two after our return home. That was kind of interesting, especially for my doctor. If it's any comfort, my neighbor has been to Ghana(mission trip) a couple times with her teenage son and both have returned hale and hearty. Cannot wait to hear about this adventure!

  5. Hmmm I think I could do with some of those clothes here on Long Island. The mosquitoes are terrible in summer, and they have already started. I got bitten through my socks the other night, and my husband was bitten through his jeans.

    Good luck with the trip - can't wait to hear all about it! x

  6. I'm sure it will be amazing. One thing on the mozzie bites; 10 years ago I went to Kenya and was expecting to be eaten alive, but instead came back with a grand total of 2 bites. This wasn't because they weren't there - Husband, who normally seems immune to these things, was completely bitten - but may have had something to do with the fact that on the advice of my chiropractor (for something totally different) I was taking VitB every day; quite a high, though not dangerous, dose. I later discovered that it's thought the blighters don't like the smell or the taste (not that I was aware of either). Maybe you want to look into this as a preventative measure? Best of luck, anyway. x

  7. The mozzies usually bite my husband rather than me so I count myself lucky. Let's hope all the preventative stuff keeps them away; if not, tuck your trousers into your socks and get that hairnet on!

  8. How exciting! Ghana does sounds amazing.

    Mozzie nets over your bed at night is a great option. You can buy some pretty cheaply to carry around with you. Otherwise, the old trouser in the sock trick Trish mentions above.

  9. What a great trip, but yes I'd opt for the heavy creams too, though the combination of swishy leg warmers and grieving widow netting look does have a certain Eighties drama about them...


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