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The Downside To Traveling

July 26, 2011

Hello Yellow Jacket Fans!

While I wish that I could be telling you about an epic journey to the Amazon (full of beautiful flowers, monkeys and other awesome jungle-y things)after a rather intense week of school (3 essays, 1 presentation, 1 debate, a test and

Wagner and some friends enjoy the parade

our final research project due early next week), I instead had another journey. My journey of salmonella…

One of the first things that we are told is “Do NOT eat off the street” and while I ate all sorts of stuff off the street in Mexico, I was going to take their word for it. I would not eat off the street. It honestly isn’t that hard to do. There really aren’t any street carts in Cuzco like Mexico DF, and the ones that I do see do not look all that appealing. I would much rather stick to my coffees and occasionally juices at the internet café.

However, one day missing my one true dessert love, ice cream, I thought I would order a milkshake from our all so trusted internet café. After all, I had a head ache and deserved ice cream, right? No matter how good the ice cream, it was not worth the next two days to come.

A few hours later while working on our research project, I got the chills and could not stop shivering. I tried jumping jacks, running in place, hot chocolate… nothing helped. Not long after my failed attempts to get warm, I asked my group mate to walk me home- I knew I was in trouble.

When I got home, I told my host parents that I wasn’t feeling well and that I was going to go to bed. I must have looked pretty terrible, too, because they seemed really worried and assured me that Shirley (my host sister that is a doctor) would check on me when she got home.

My head barely hit the pillow before I was asleep and next thing I know Shirley is waking me up and checking me for all sorts of things. It took every fiber of my being to concentrate and understand what they were saying and respond with something that made sense. Turns out that I had a temperature that was 104°F and my liver was swollen. While mom worked on breaking my fever, Shirley ran to the pharmacy to get me medicine. Even with a doctor in the house, they almost called the ambulance for me.

Over the next 48 hours or so I just slept, and Shirley and mami would come in and check on me and give me tea and crackers so I could take my handful of pills. As much as I assured them, though, they still don’t believe me that I didn’t eat anything all the streets.

I missed my bus to Manu, not that I was in traveling condition anyway, and swapped my could be Amazon stories for

Enjoying the view on a hike of the Pisaq

one of salmonella. I’m telling myself that they’re kind of equal… right? My mom always said my sweet tooth was going to get me one day, I just didn’t think I’d be in Peru about to leave for the Amazon when it did.

If you’d like to hear more of my daily adventures in Peru check out my blog at or email me at


Glenn Travis Wagner
Men’s Swimming and Diving, 2011


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