Yesterday, the DRC and WHO announced that Ebola is here. But not here here, and not Ebola Ebola. There are a lot of buts involved in explaining this… which I know you probably don’t want to hear. It must be frustrating to hear me sounding cavalier about this topic — though it’s not at all how I intend to sound, because believe me, I have quite a healthy respect for my own mortality and can often sense impending doom (even when utterly unnecessary). If Seb and I felt at risk, we would be out of here.
Thank you to the friends and family who’ve contacted me to ask about the status of Ebola here. I love that you’re thinking of us and definitely owe you an update (especially after so recently complaining about giardia!). You all had done your homework, too, mentioning that it seemed to be far away from us. Those of you who haven’t contacted me probably also noticed it wasn’t too close. So I say nice work everybody, we have a total geography WIN here!
Whichever camp you fall in, you’re right. It IS far away from us. There are no reported cases in our little DR-Congo, nor any neighboring countries. This reassurance, of course, overlooks a few key facts, like: Ebola was discovered in 1976 in this very country; it’s named after a tributary of the Congo River; and, somehow, the current strain affecting West Africa (out of five possibilities) is the “Zaire” strain, or the same one that usually strikes here. Yikes. Ahem.