Thurs 25 Oct: Quick Update from the Road.
Quick stop in Villa Santa Lucia, three days south of Chaiten, Carretera Austral, Chile. Pouring with rain, very cold. Still 8 miles of the day’s 20 mile quota to run. Dave had a worrying 48 hours of flu like symptons, without a cold/runny nose etc. He had a fierce chill, although he was flaming hot to the touch. This was accompanied by an aching chest and torso, difficulty in breathing and diahorrea.
This matched exactly the Hanta Virus symptons. A virus carried by mice introduced to Chile from the Far East a couple of decades ago. The inccubation period of two to three weeks tied in conveniently with when we slept in a shack for the night after getting severly wet and cold north of Villa Tranquilo. Unfortunately the night was plagued by mice! They scratched and shot past the tent which we had luckily errected inside the shed. Dave even managed to wollop one stone-dead with his trainer in the middle of the night!
The virus is spread by mice and their feaces, even mousy dust. All were present in our abode! The killer sun and fresh air that are supposed to rid dwellings of the virus were in short supply. We didn’t take the risk seriously enough. Anyway, there is ony a 38% chance of death! Reality is it was probably just an odd bout of flue. So we’re running on regardless and are well within reach of medical care should anything happen. Thanks to Maria, Cathy, Tim and Carolina for your advice.
The latest: We’ve decided to stay in Sant Lucia for the night, as we became so cold. We’re short on mileage, so will have to make it up tomorrow. Just had a cold shower (ugh) and so we’re both standing virtually inside the land lady’s fire to warm up! At least there is one and we have a chance to dry our clothes before tomorrow’s downpour… From the sound of the rain on the tin roof and the drips coming through the sheet of plastic covering the windows that’s wavering in the wind, it doesn’t look as if it’s going to stop too soon!