Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The 'S' Word

The 'S' word is recognised globally as a taboo; if we don't talk about it it is not real. Well we have been living the 'S' word for two weeks now and let me tell you it's real alright.

SWINE FLU; ssshhhh but don't tell anyone ok. There have been three confirmed cases in Jersey but I have not heard of any 'confirmed' cases in Guernsey. What does it mean to have confirmed Swine Flu anyway? Do they stamp a massive red rubber stamp on your forehead 'UNCLEAN' and make you wear a cow bell? Is a case confirmed when you take your child to the Doctor and they say they are 90% sure it is Swine Flu but no blood test is done? Swine Flu is no worse than your normal flu, people die every year of boring old normal flu but the media don't give it a fancy name so therefore it is not as dangerous. Swine Flu - it leads to images of Doctor Who pig men with runny noses.

Anyhoo we have unconfirmed Swine Flu at our school. Yesterday there were 106 pupils out of approximately 280 and 5 staff away sick. There is alot of playground talk about the school closing but it seems to me it is like shutting the gate after the horse has already bolted. B3 had it last week on Saturday, Sunday and Monday but was fit and well on Tuesday so she went back to school. B1 had it Tuesday night, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday but had picked up by Saturday afternoon so he was back at school on Monday. Other children have not recovered so fast and have been in bed for up to 10 days.

By Tuesday the rules had changed and if your child is displaying symptoms they must stay off school for seven days. I had to go to the office Tuesday morning and there were 12 kids waiting for their parents to come and collect them as they were being sent home. I have heard of three other schools on the Island with a few off sick but our school has been hit the worst. Yesterday afternoon B2 was absolutely 100% fine so we went to dancing. BIG MISTAKE! All the other children at dancing are from the a different school to ours and when I mentioned the dreaded lurgy that was attacking our school all the other Mums looked at me bewildered; no children were sick at their school. 'Had we already had it?' they asked; 'Oh yes, but B2 hasn't but she is fine - no temperature or any other symptoms.' B2 complained of a headache last night at 5.30pm and had a slight temperature. I feel terrible; the thought of spreading this horrible thing to an entirely new school! What an idiot! I don't know what I was thinking or even if I was, in fact. I hope she didn't infect anyone or I am NOT going to be very popular next week.

So there we have it. Is it Swine Flu for sure? Well I guess we will never know as no-one as had a blood test. Is it nasty and highly contagious? Yes definitely; high temperatures, headaches, vomiting, diarrhea. Does it deserve a name of its own? Most definitely; what about the Deadly Guernsey Germ or the Seven Day Sentence or Donkey Fever (as donkeys are the symbol of Guernsey). I think Donkey Fever sounds best as we are going with an animal theme.

Read all about it Donkey Fever hits Guernsey......yes folks you heard it here first!

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