Last minute arrangements and off we go


Previous page: Getting our visas organized


Vaccinations and mosquito repellents

Such a dilemma. We are getting so much conflicting information on both subjects. We had resigned ourselves to not bothering with vaccinations. We believed that with the suddenness of this trip we didn't have time to be given any series of needles anyway.

Our pharmacist suggested we talk to our respective doctors about Doxycycline capsules to ward off Malaria. Apparently you start taking them a couple of days before you go, during the trip and a while after you get home. Whilst in the pharmacy we looked at wrist/ankle bands that supposedly keep mozzies away. We also looked at roll on and spray repellents, some of which contained a product called DEET.

However, my doctor today suggested I have a Tetanus needle (seeing I have no recollection of having one in recent years). I was equally useless at remembering if I'd had Hep A & B shots too. The end result of today's visit was that I had a Tetanus needle and I had a blood test to see if I'd ever had Hep A & B. My doctor didn't think the Doxycycline was warranted as we won't be going to rural areas or to places where water lays around stagnant. I have to wait for the results of the blood tests and then I may have to squeeze in two Hepatitis needles before we go and then the final, third needle after we get home for full protection. By just having two shots (which is all we have time for) she assures me it will give me 90% protection. My doctor mentioned that the latest 'flu vaccine was due to arrive any day. She felt it might be wise for me to have that if it arrives in time. I asked my doctor if DEET was something she knew much about. Sadly it wasn't. I will have to leave it up to Google to learn the ins and outs of DEET.

I went home to repeat the details to Ian. He was most unimpressed. He has no intention of having any needles. He avoids them at all cost purely because he doesn't like needles of any sort.



I try to find out what needles I had on previous overseas trips

A bit of digging around at home showed that I actually had a Tetanus needle in 2011 when we went to Bhutan/Nepal/Tibet. Hmmmm ..... I wonder how I go now after having another one today? I hope there are no adverse side effects. I also discovered I'd had Hep A & B so there will be no need to have those. I also had a jab or two for Rabies back in 2011. I really do need to start keeping records of such critical medical things.


Look at this scene I found online. I hope we see stunning scenery and agriculture such as this.

Heavenly views will be seen..... added later..... we saw nothing like it.



Reading up on the subject of DEET

Insecticides with DEET in them work. However, it is a strong chemical not without side effects and certainly not something you would apply to a child's skin. Seems like it is not a good idea to put it on an adult's skin either. I've read of suggestions where you put it on your clothing instead of your skin. When you take the clothes off you do it carefully and wash the clothes before wearing them again. I really don't like the sound of this stuff at all.

Yesterday Ian and I went to a pharmacy and bought ourselves some insect repellents. I've bought a Para Kito wrist/ankle band and Ian has bought a Para Kito protection clip that he is going to attach to his belt. Both are said to "reduce your mosquito appeal". They have natural ingredients in them - essential oils and no DEET. We have bought ourselves some Aerogard spray-on insect repellent. It says it is odourless which I like the sound of and it is also low irritant. Let's hope these items work.

The lady at the pharmacy suggested Vitamin B tablets as she reckons the "odour" exuded through your skin (from taking this vitamin) is something mozzies don't like. We bought some B1 and we hope that also works. We really don't want to use DEET.

The Para Kito products cost about $25 each. If we are still attacked my mozzies we'll just have to buy something else locally.



Still haven't got our cruise paperwork or tickets.

We are both concerned that we still don't have have any sort of tickets, either for the flights or the cruise. I rang Maree at RAC Travel and she assured me she has them in her office. Apparently they arrived in her office that day (Thursday morning). She told me she would send them down here to Bunbury for us by Express Post. She also said she would phone us when they were on their way. It is now Saturday and only one week before we leave and we still don't have this information. I have rung RAC Travel today to find out what the hold up is but Maree is not working today. I think the RAC agent I spoke to thought I was a bit shirty but I'm afraid I don't care. This is important. I shall attempt to ring Maree first thing on Monday morning.

I don't think we will use this travel agency again - even though we have used them before and they were fine. There has been a lack of communication on a few occasions in the booking of this trip.

Added later: It is now Monday afternoon and still no sign of the tickets. Again we ring Maree. It turns out she sent them on Friday (but failed to call us, as promised). We got a tracking number from Maree and looked on Australia Post's website. They have been in Bunbury since yesterday evening so that's something positive. We rang Australia Post and they told us the package would be delivered shortly. Half an hour later we had our precious tickets. Now we don't feel so stressed.


Travelling to Perth airport

Our plane leaves Perth in the very early hours of Sunday 19th March. Normally we like to take the South-West Coachlines bus to Perth because it goes right out to the airport. We could actually get to the airport at a sensible time with this company but our difficulty is in getting home from the airport at midnight on 30th March when we get back. There are no buses heading to Bunbury at that time of night.

We can't see any value in a (partial) night's accommodation in Perth followed by an early morning coach trip home. We've now decided to drive up to Perth, park out at the airport and then drive home at the end of the holiday. We'll set off on Saturday in the car much earlier than necessary. We are cautious people and we don't want to break down somewhere on the highway and miss the flight. So, we'll be out at the airport incredibly early and we'll casually get the bus into Perth city, have a wander around to kill time, have a late meal there and catch a local bus back out to the airport later in the evening. Should work well, we reckon!



Next page: Let the holiday begin