Saturday, September 29, 2012

Under the tent cabin in Yosemite - by Lily

When we entered Curry Village campground in Yosemite, rows and rows of densely packed white tents immediately attracted my attention. My heart sunk. This looked like the scene in the Harry Potter movie where..

And yeap, these are the so called “tent cabin”, where we’d spend three nights in the park. Despite the high price and difficulty of booking, we saw only three beds inside as we entered our cabin. It was hot inside, but there’s no sight of AC, no TV, no Wi-Fi, no shower, and the only outlet was plugged in for the heater. Good thing we didn’t need the heater at night, so we had one outlet to use for charging our three cameras. But since we were there to enjoy the scenery in the park, we decided to make do with the accommodations we got.
As it turned out, we really didn’t need all the other “necessities”. The shower house was reasonable enough to take care of our needs. After a full day of hiking, all we needed was a good night sleep. The temperature did cool down quite a bit at night. We sat outside our tent, watched clouds moving by mountain peaks, and gazed stars above our heads at night. We heard voices and languages of all kind. The last night, we turned off the light early and chatted. We told funny stories and talked about interesting people we met during the trip, we talked about summer camps and upcoming school year. Somehow the kids started a conversation on attitude and gratitude. It was just the perfect family bonding time.

The next morning before checking out, we took a picture in front of our tent cabin as a memory.

Note: A week after we returned home from Yosemite, a scaring news came - that there was Hantavirus in Curry Village, and people stayed there from June to August were potentially exposed to the  potentially deadly virus. I read related news, searched internet about the diseases the virus can induce.  We were fortunately that we did not stay at the outbreak area - "signature tent". I have been very carefully to monitor the status of the whole family since. I asked Nicholas to read and summarize what he read about Hantavirus.

Appendix:  Hantavirus at Curry Village Yosemite  - by Nicholas

Hantavirus is a rare disease found in the droppings and saliva of deer mice. In California approximately 14% of mice carry the disease. 36% of all reported cases of Hantavirus have resulted in death.

Signs and symptoms of Hantavirus present themselves 1–6 weeks after exposure and initially appear like a common cold; symptoms in the first 1–4 days include fever, chills, muscle aches, especially in the back and thighs, nausea, and cough. Signs and symptoms become increasingly serious afterward. The types of Hantavirus that cause HPS in the United States cannot be transmitted from one person to another.

Early medical attention is critical for individuals who contract Hantavirus. Early medical attention can increase the chance that a Hantavirus patient will survive. Found especially at Yosemite in Signature Tent Cabins at Camp Curry Village, The National Park Service Office of Public Health has confirmed six cases of Hantavirus that have been linked to Yosemite National Park. Two of the six cases have resulted in fatalities. The other four individuals are improving or recovered. Approximately 3,000 registered parties have been contacted through email, mail or phone calls to inform them of the recent cases of Hantavirus and to advise them to seek immediate medical attention if they exhibit any symptoms of the virus. The National Park Service has closed the Signature Tent Cabins at Yosemite and has intensified building inspections and assessments and cleanings throughout the park.

My father was worried about me because I had flu recently. But he was not too worried since we did not stay in a Signature tent cabin. Nevertheless we are susceptible to the virus, we must be very careful.

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