Recently I attended a Peace Corps meeting in a city about 2 days travel from me called Ngoundere. Before this meeting, I knew that something was up with my body and I had come to link it with the Malaria medication I take called Mephloquine (def not spelled right). I had been having terrible nightmares involving large spiders over and over again and people had been telling me that I was acting out in my sleep. However, these side effects took a turn for the worse at this meeting.
The first night, I came back and my roommate was already asleep and sprawled out across the bed. After pushing him over and claiming a sliver of the bed for myself, I attempted to fall asleep. Five minutes later he proceeded to shake me, yelling “Qui est la?! Qui est la?!” (“Who is there?!”). After a few minutes of shaking him out of his dream-state and convincing him I was me, he rolled over without saying a word. The next day, I woke up kind of excited to tell my roommate about how badly his sleep had treated me the previous night. He told me that he didn’t remember a thing about it but he did have a story for me. He told me that he woke up in the middle of the night, turned over, and there I was sitting Indian-style, my head over his, just staring at him. I then shook him, asked him why he was in my room, and told him to get out. He then had to do the same thing I did and convince me it was all OK and to go back to sleep. I don’t remember any of this.
As if this wasn’t bad enough, a few nights later I had another incident. That night, my roommate asked me to exchange rooms with another girl for reasons you can imagine. The next day, her roommate said she had a story for me. Apparently, she awoke around 3 AM, turned over, and I was just staring at her. I then proceeded to grab her wrists and say “Small time quick!! Small time quick!!” while trying to push her off the bed and out of the room. After yelling at her in pidgin English (all these languages are really coming in handy), I accused her of being a Cameroonian prostitute and ordered her off my bed. Again, I don’t remember any of this. As you can imagine, as soon as I got back to Peace Corps headquarters, I asked the medical staff if I could switch medications and they obliged.