Adventures in Cambodia
Part IV: The Government Comes to Call
A few days after we got back from Cambodia, there was a knock on my door around 7 pm. It was the security guy from downstairs, announcing that a representative of the Health Department would be coming by to see me. “When?” I asked.
“Today” he replied. I looked at my watch. I looked at him with my eyebrows raised. He added, “In about 1 hour, I think.” About 10 minutes later, he returned to say that the official would come the next morning instead.
When we were on the plane, shortly before landing in Seoul, we had been asked to fill out custom’s declaration and health cards. Since I didn’t want to risk a hefty fine, or 5 years in prison, (as the card said I would if I lied), I dutifully checked the boxes that said I had had vomiting and diarrhea in the past 10 days. Annelie also checked one of the boxes because she has also had traveler’s diarrhea. [This is more than you wanted to know about our trip, isn’t it?] When we got the the airport, the heath official asked me about it and I told him it was just food poisoning, and we went on our merry way.
That’s how, 3 days later, I found myself in my bathroom with a sterile swab in my hand, being asked to prove to the waiting government official that I didn’t have cholera. How embarrassing.