At the beginning of October I developed a toothache. It persisted and got steadily worse. The dentist saw me immediately, for which I am very grateful, x-rayed the teeth, identified two abscesses, and gave me two antibiotics. One was anti-alcohol which meant I had a dry two weeks. The following week I was scheduled to fly to Johannesburg and drive to Eswatini (Swaziland). On the Monday there was a lump in my gum, and it was still very painful. I had an emergency appointment, the abscess was lanced, and the relief was immediate!
I was offline for a few days in March, an interesting experience especially during the time of crisis in the UK. It was my birthday on the 18th and I celebrated by returning to South Africa on the 16th for a series of elective medical procedures. I took the 06h15 KLM flight from Norwich to Amsterdam where I connected on the 10h15 flight to Johannesburg. The journey takes nearly 11 hours. My case was one of the first to be unloaded and appear on the carousel, these little things matter.
There are no connecting flights to Durban that late. My standard operating procedure is to stay in a hotel at the airport and connect the next day. Normally the travel agent’s opening proposal for the connection is a plane at an absurdly early hour, 07h00 for example. On this trip I was sensible and got a flight a little after 13h00. It allowed me ample time to sort myself out, and have a leisurely breakfast.
I was quoted in a recent article which appeared in the Observer and published on guardian.co.uk However, the news article bears little resemblance to the headline, which I find sensational and does not reflect my views as I emphasised that AIDS spending is crucial “for those already on or requiring treatment”.
Alan Whiteside, will be a discussant at the HIV/AIDS Security and Conflict Initiative: A Briefing and Discussion, to be held 21 September, 2009 at the Hague.
The event marks the release of the new report, “HIV/AIDS, Security and Conflict: New Realities, New Responses.” The results of 29 global research studies on HIV/AIDS and fragile states, uniformed services, humanitarian crises and post-conflict transitions will be presented and discussed.
When: September 21, 2009, 11:30 – 16:00
Where: Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Bezuidenhoutseweg 67, The Hague De Oude Perszaal 00C 33
Presenters and Discussants: Alex De Waal, Georg Frerks, Charlotte Watts, Manuel Carballo, Anyieth D’Awol, and Pamela De Largy
Contact: Georg Frerks, + 31 (0) 30 253 6549, email@example.com