These last couple of days have been a bit of a blur, not because we went to party too much, but due to illness.

To cut a long story short, we drank water from the wrong river. A friendly farmer in Granada told us there was a small drinkable stream of water underneath a bridge, but we confused it with a slightly bigger one. Result: a couple of days of vomiting, a day of fever and a few more days of blurriness and general unease.

I find it fascinating how easy our supposedly strong human body can be reduced to a sack of potatoes by something invisible, such as a virus, bacteria, parasites or protozoa. A quick look on Wikipedia showed me how many different types there are and reminded me of my biology classes in university. Jeez, there are many of these critters out there and the symptoms vary from vomiting to hypovolemic shock, not something to take too lightly. I kind of get the feeling we were lucky on this one…

All in all, it has been a hard way to learn to keep our SteriPEN charged at all times, but I am glad I learned it this way, it will be pretty hard to forget. Which reminds me what this article was going to be about: the SteriPEN Freedom.

  • This lightweight apparatus clears half a liter of water in 48 seconds just by stirring a stick in your glass of water. You just wait until the UV-light on the stick lights up and get it out when the light dims. If you have a liter to drink, just repeat the process twice. It is that easy.
  • SteriPEN estimates 40 half-liter treatments per charge, and this seems to be correct. The bulb is rated to 8000 treatments, and both the bulb and battery are replaceable by SteriPEN.
  • The Freedom has an integrated white LED light as well. It isn’t that bright but very suitable for basic camp tasks. Activation involves three quick back and forth “rotations” of the device, this will turn the light on for tree minutes.
  • The technology is very eco-friendly, no chemicals are needed and it has a usb-rechargeable battery.

In short, it is hard to find anything bad about this product; it is perfectly designed, very light, does the work and keeps you safe from these vomiting sessions and/or worse. It is 120 bucks (or less) you’ll never regret having spent.