Swine flu scare for Coffs teen
THE Swine flu epidemic has become a reality for one Coffs Coast family.
Woolgoolga High student Ryan Williams is on a Rotary exchange in Orizaba, Mexico, and has only just been allowed out of isolation since the swine flu panic first began.
Ryan was on a Rotary field trip to the small town in the Gulf Mexico when he first heard about the epidemic.
The group he was with was quickly issued with face masks and told to keep together as they headed back to their host families on public transport.
For the next two weeks Ryan had to stay at his host family's house and was unable to venture outside or leave the premises.
"After more than a week, we are still not allowed to go to school, the movies or to visit shopping centres," Ryan told his parents.
His parents Greg and Heather Williams have been proud of the way Ryan has assessed the situation and avoided panicking.
A Rotary spokeswoman said Ryan was an active teenager and enjoyed lots of physical activities and had found it hard to be confined.
"But he is getting to experience a global event up close and learning a lot from people's reactions and the experiences of his host family as they deal with the situation," she said.