Tuesday August 28th 2012 Tim
There is a completely fallacious argument that
suggests it's never sensible to go near a medical dictionary.
The claim is, these monuments contain words and pictures that can act
upon the imagination and drive a mind to produce random and sudden
convictions unequaled elsewhere in literature, except perhaps when words
and pictures are placed in the hands of the political class or
mathematicians who work in statistics. I believe it was the friend
who lives too far away who recently offered the words "West Nile" in
conjunction with computer screens, Artisan Wine, insect swatting and
keyboards. And I'd like to think it was meant as a comforting aside to
the subject of a Fruit Fly Plague that I am so bravely resisting by
courting a King of France's adage 'to take no notice.' "West
Nile," is both a Mosquito borne sickness and geographic location.
The sickness was first identified amongst people to the west of the
White Nile, in the North corner of Uganda. It's the home of the Lagbara
People, who are very adept at raising Guinea Fowl. And here it's
worth remembering, it was the Blue Nile, not the White Nile, that has
it's source in Lake Tana, about seven hundred miles north of the
Ateso, that some legends insist is or was the route to Eden.
I have set foot in the
part of the world that is "The West Nile," and following a series of
even more recent events, one of which involved what I have decided was a
Mosquito bite while I was amongst the Beans, I am now fairly convinced that
I have been suffering from "West Nile" for at least fifty years. It's
a revelation that explains so much. An insight into behavior and ailments,
vagueness of mind, incompetence at long division, complete absence of what I
call 'genuflection' but which others prefer to call 'ambition' or 'career
path.' There's the wrist and knee, that cannot be described as
belonging to athletic injury. There's an extraordinary intolerance for
other opinions. Inability to understand the semi-colon or the colon.
There's a fondness for Butterflies and the invasive Buddleia.
But so much more important, I am able at last to see a tribute to my
strength of character for having endured such ailments for so long without
ever actually entering the final stages of "West Nile Fever" which is
blessed release, or as the medical profession prefers it, 'coma followed by
death'. And I also think I might have Bilharzia, which puts me in the
company of two hundred million people. It's a Snail borne sickness, or more
accurately a Fluke borne sickness, that has a wonderful rolling name which
substitutes well for the 'G,' 'D,' and 'B' words I find myself compulsively
vocalizing while walking the ten yards that belong to the ice cream
display at the Grocery Store when there are children too old to be stuffed
into shopping carts nearby.