By the time I arrived in Sydney the rash was taking over my face and arm. I looked like I was suffering a serious bout of leprocsy, and I was starting to panic. It was raining a lot when I arrived. The whole of my first day (I felt like I was still in London, wtf?!)
So I took myself to the Doctors, he prescribed me some steroids and some steroid cream. Which I applied immediately upon leaving the surgery. Phew! I tried to relax. I got my laundry and did that but with all that time on my hands and wifi…
Now, I’m not one to Google symptoms, usually – but for some reason being in an unfamiliar place makes me a touch more paranoid than usual…
By four pm I had decided it was scabies, had sat in a very hot sauna (after reading that the bugs can’t survive at over 40 degrees) for as long as I could bear, had done an intensive work out session (just to take my mind off it!) and was in the chemist buying two (because surely one wasn’t enough) tubes of scabies cream.
I am not proud of myself, I am an idiot. By the next morning I resembled the elephant woman…I had to go to the airport to meet my best friend. The one who’d been in India. So I got up very early and lurked at the arrivals with my sunglasses on and my hair covering my face, in a comedy fashion. This was a moment I had been looking forward too for four long months and here I was totally and utterly preoccupied by my face! Never mind my arm!
I wish I could say that it was all forgotten when we saw each other again but she took one look and me and said “let’s get you to hospital!” The health system in this country really is amazing, I have thoroughly enjoyed my experiences of health care over here. Which have been numerous but I’ll get to that later.
The hospital confirmed a severe allergic reaction to bed bugs – that f***ing hostel in St Kilda, and told me to continue with the same treatment the Doc had prescribed. I cried. What?! No miracle cure? It was Christmas tomorrow! The Doctor kind of laughed. You’ll be ok, he said.
And to be fair. I was!
The drama that ensued following this diagnosis however…well that’s another story!