Friday, September 19, 2008

Hurricane in Haiti??

So we decide to check the hurricane advisory centre and there's a 20-50% chance a hurricane south-east of Haiti will form. Not good. The hurricane can either go North or North-West or fall apart...and we hope it falls apart. The worst we expect is heavy rain since it most likely won't form - I hope. Now I need to find a poncho before my flight leaves at 6AM Saturday morning. Time to sleep.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Our Plane to Haiti

So I was curious on the type of plane we're taking down, and it's a Fairchild Metroliner III (Click for link). I thought the Dash 8-300 (DH3) 50-seater plane I took before was small, but this wins. Max. capacity is 18 passengers.

The funny part is our luggage is 50 lbs. max and if we go over, it's $3.50 USD / lb. Yikes! I really hope we don't exceed max. takeoff weight!


On another note, I was asking my friends on tips on what to bring to wear to ward off the mosquitoes and I got all of these ideas:

Adult Onesies
Another onesie with a back door

And leotards, if I want to stay cool during the day and don't want to wear jeans.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Haiti in 7 Days

Only 7 more days will we head to Cap Haitien, Haiti to give eye exams. Will they need it? They just got destroyed by 4 hurricanes...eye exams are probaly the least of their worries. But who knows. We'll see. So still need a list of stuff to bring and bug spray with DEET is at the top of the list.

Now many people don't really know what DEET exactly is or what the % means, so I thought I'd blog about it. Deet basically blocks the insects "smell" and confuses the insects to not bite humans. Found this good research paper from NEJM over here:
The results were basically DEET-based products provided complete protection for the longest duration. Higher concentrations of DEET provided longer-lasting protection. So 100% DEET will protect up to 12 hrs and 30% DEET will last 6hrs.
So far the highest DEET I've found was 40%. I'm still trying to look for a higher one!

So how is DEET gonna help me in Haiti? Apart from the kidnappings, hurricanes, flooding, riots, I'm hoping to avoid Dengue fever which is transmitted by a mosquito that hunts during the day. What's so scary about this fever? There's no vaccine or real treatments, only supportive therapy! So what else is out there? Malaria, Hepatitis, Typhoid. Vaccines for all of them. Check.

Some videos of what I expect to see.

Funny Pictures

I'm a fan of taking photos of funny signs. So here's the first two that I've came across recently.

This is on the Canadian side of the border. Just letting everyone know that you might not like what you see when you cross.

This is a meat store in the Italian market. Just thought it was interesting of all the kinds of meat you can buy!

Deal of the day