During my first year of life, my dad worked for Mobil Gas. He was part of an exploratory team looking for possible new drilling sites around the world. I think I was about six months old when he made a trip to Nigeria.
Since I was a curious youngin’ I licked the bottom of his shoes as soon as I could get my little hands on them. My parents were both horrified; I don’t know who had the worse case of fear: my mom, being the overprotective and cautious parent of her first-born, or my dad who knew where those soles had been. My mom called Poison Control who simply instructed to wait it out.
Fast-forward to the Fall of 2009. A pretty serious outbreak of Swine Flu affected the nation. My sister was diagnosed with the virus. I waited anxiously for symptoms of my own to surface since we were very close and spent a lot of time together. Weeks passed and it seemed as though the virus had passed through. To this day, I am convinced that by licking my father’s shoes after their trip to Nigeria, I was able to build up immunities to all kinds of ‘interesting’ diseases, including Swine Flu.