What Not to Take on Vacation: A Cast, A Cold and Shingles

Most travel blogs are written to show the reader how awesome travel is and what a wonderful life the traveller has because they get to have such incredible adventures. I know that’s true. I do it on this blog all the time.

But here’s the truth: sometimes life sucks.

FullSizeRenderI am on a plane to Iceland and some parts of my body are uncomfortable and some parts are in extreme pain. Last night I lay in bed and said to my partner, that I just wanted to get away from my summer of sickness, my back to back and overlapping jobs, from everyone and everything. I wanted a plane to take me far away, and I didn’t even care if the plane went down (Bad karma, I know! Dear Plane Gods: I didn’t mean it).

A portaging trip to Algonquin Park, one of my most favourite places on earth, had left me with a fractured ankle and six weeks in a cast (I’m heading to Iceland on week 4). I caught a cold the next week that rocked my respiratory system. And then, I got shingles.

Shingles. What is this, 1957? Shingles are a resurgence of the chicken pox virus that remains dormant in your system unless you come under extreme stress. ‘Have you had any stress to the body?’, the clinic doctor asked as I sat in his office with my leg in a cast, blowing my nose.


So I have a fractured ankle, I’m taking blood thinners so a clot doesn’t rise to my heart or brain and I am on anti-viral medication and popping Tylenol like candy because I have freaking shingles.

BUT…I’m still sitting here on a plane heading to Iceland.


Because it’s exactly what I need. It is the exact thing that will make me feel better.

I will touch down in a new country, sip duty free champagne in a hot spring, start a cross-country road trip and I will be stress free. I will play Cayucus and stare out the window at rugged landscapes, glaciers, oceans and a 24 sun and not have a care in the world.

And I truly believe that finding moments of not having a care in the world is what keeps you happy and healthy.

That, and a long walk…but…


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