Having strep not best way to tour Fiji


Very few people can say that they have had strep throat on a mission trip in a remote village in Fiji. I am one of the few. 

All was going well until I felt that tell-tale stinging in my throat. Having had strep throat many times before, I knew what it meant when my fever broke and my throat reddened. But on a mission trip halfway across the world and 60 miles downstream from the nearest doctor, my cold sweats were soon accompanied by nervous sweats. It would be days before I could get some much needed medical help. 

Being sick did not mean stopping. I hiked miles uphill carrying supplies in to build a school in the village, and I spent days in the Fijian sun, not phased by my fever and aches. 

On Tuesday morning, my trip leader, Katherine, woke me up at 4 a.m to head to the doctor. Momentarily oblivious to my throat ache and fever, I was excited to start our journey out of the village and into town to see the local doctor. 

“At least we will get to see new parts of Fiji,” I croaked. A smile appeared on Katherine’s face. 

We jumped onto the back of an open truck, but we weren’t alone. Accompanying us on our trip were thirty chickens in coops and hundreds of flying feathers. The truck seemed to hit every bump on the road, sending Katherine and me hurtling toward each other, holding onto the wire coops for dear life. In spite of my sore throat, I couldn’t help but laugh. The sight of flying feathers and sound of giggling girls could have easily been mistaken for a pillow fight. My throat pain took a back seat to my stomach pains from laughing. 

After testing positive for strep, I popped my first antibiotic, boarded the truck, and bumped and rolled and cried laughing all the way back. My trip to Fiji was one of the best experiences of my life. I hope to go back one day, though maybe I’ll leave the feathers and fever out next time.