Actually worrying about malaria

Sitting outside in the sun, stealing Internet access from a hotel, and feeling annoyed at the slowness of the connection, I felt a mosquito bite me. The day before, I’d heard that the daytime mosquitoes tend to carry diseases more than their nighttime counterparts.

Hmm, I wondered, I wonder if I’ll get Malaria.

And then another one bit me, and then another, and then I didn’t see or feel one bite me but I saw and felt the pad of skin raise on my hand, looking like a Peter Parker spider bite minus the coolness of knowing I’d turn into spidey.

Great, I thought, I’m going to catch something here. What’s that one called, something with a “D,” right?

That disease I couldn’t recall at the moment is actually called dengue fever. Perhaps you’ve heard of it? Some people just call it breakbone fever,
I guess because of the symptoms.

And then it hit me.

You know, this is the first I’ve ever actually thought of malaria or dengue fever. I mean, I checked out Seth Godin’s End Malaria project. I think I might have even donated some money to support efforts to help eradicate the disease.

But yeah, who in America actually thinks of it, like as a disease that could happen to them? Not me.

Sitting in the sun, though, skin swelling and Internet slugging, I felt it. And I worry.