Don't worry. It is a proven medical fact that computer users cannot contract swine flu by visiting the website of an infected blogger. For someome who has been outrageously healthy for over fifty years, it's hard to believe the last twelve months. Last August, I picked up a rare and deadly strain of e-coli, whilst on holiday in Turkey. Only heavy duty antibiotics could save me. Then there were all those weeks of waiting for my urethrotomy operation in early June and now - would you believe it - since I "retired" from work a week ago, I have been suffering from symptoms which leave me and my nurse (wife) in little doubt that I have been and still am infected with the H1N1 influenza virus - swine flu.Headache, excessive tiredness, sore throat, sneezing, production of nasty phlegm, cough, achey limbs - if it's not swine flu then it's all a huge co-incidence. On the new Pandemic website, my responses to the sequence of questions asked drew that selfsame conclusion and indicated that I should go to an antiviral medication collection point with my unique patient reference number. Trouble is the website seemed to have an irritating glitch because it could only reveal the address of one antiviral centre in Sheffield - miles away at Wincobank. And why would I need the addresses of similar collection points in York and Scarborough?
Each morning this week I have woken hoping that I would notice significant improvement but to be honest it's been a week of false dawns and physical lethargy. Perhaps tomorrow - Saturday - I will feel a bit better. If it goes on much longer I will be developing bristles, a snout, and a corkscrew tail - which - when I think about it - could be handy in an emergency.