During training, our Program Manager told us that one time she visited a PCV’s house that was so messy that there was underwear in a marmite.
“Fool!” I thought, “Who would do such a thing?”
Yet, nine months later, there I was boiling my laundry while cooking breakfast.
How had this happened? This is the result of a chain of events that started several months ago…
One day, taking off my watch, I noticed a few bumps.
Since it only appeared where my watch was, I decided to stop wearing it for a bit.
A couple weeks passed but I noticed I still had the bumps, so I asked a friend.
Since fungal infections take FOREVER to clear up, she told me to not worry if it lasts another month.
So another month passed, but the mysterious bumps remained. So one morning I consulted my favorite book, Where There’s No Doctor.
It definitely was not ringworm, but it looked an awful lot like…SCABIES!! (Sound familiar? Yes, I did blog about this before. Highs and Lows: Puberty? No, Peace Corps)
Groggy no more, I headed out for my run, holding my bumpy wrist away from me, disgusted with the fact there might be hundreds of tiny mites burrowing in it.
“Just take my arm and leave,” I bargained with my appendage’s new friends.
But then I started to reason with myself. After all, I am no doctor (as we’ve previously seen and my village is finally learning.)
Instead, I decided to call PCMO.
So the next time I had internet I sent them a picture, with as many detailed phrases about the bumps as I could.
Fortunately, PCMO informed me I had a “self-resolving staph infection,” which would clear up if I left it alone. (NOTE: This does not appear in Where There’s No Doctor, so I couldn’t argue.)
I was a huge relief until several weeks later I realized the bumps were still there and one had appeared on my toe.
After consulting a friend and the book again, I called PCMO again…
So the next day I went to the doctor…
Two months of mystery solved in two minutes.
That night I slept with the knowledge of knowing that I was right crawling all over me. (Just kidding. That was the mites.)
The following day I went to the pharmacy and procured treatment.
(Fun fact: Scabies treatment burns.)
And that was how I ended up boiling my clothes the other morning.