Sunday 25 February 2018

Notes from the sick bay

Well it's hardly original of me I grant,
but I have a Cold.
Or it's had me, for about a week now.
Who's counting?
The days and nights are merging in a mess of screwed up tissues,
creased sheets,
menthol inhalers,
Miss Marple DVDs,
turmeric drinks because the internet says it's anti-inflammatory,
honey and lemon because that used to be good enough,
and the annoying thing is,
it's looking so bright and inviting out there.

I ought to be out in it.
I ought to be doing so many things.
There are birthdays to attend to.
And spring cleaning.
And grand-daughter to play with.
But I have a Cold.
And no one else must get it.
I'll come back to that important point.

My mother never got colds 
and I tell myself I have inherited that handy gene
because it really is quite a rare occurrence.
I saw this one eyeing me up a few times
but laughed it off.
Look who's laughing now.

Yesterday I thought I had turned a corner.
The violent sneezing stopped and the diaphragm stopped hurting.
(A cracked rib surely?)
I even spent most of the night asleep instead of wandering around at 2.40 am
(a time nobody should see twice a day) 
thinking the house seemed a little surprised
to be hosting me out of hours.

But no. The Cold had a new plan.
Travel down boys. Check out the bronchi.
See what mischief we can do there.

So now the coughing has started in earnest.
The forty a day sort of cough,
which coupled with the turmeric stained fingers is all too realistic.

Dr Google has been consulted again.
Plenty of fluids, 
stay hydrated, 
create a moist atmosphere - yes got the message
Advil (why do I always end up at Mayo clinic?),
it's a virus so don't even think of asking for antibiotics,
if you've got a fever and chills and you're over 65 and pregnant
and you've been ill for much longer than one week you wuss, 
maybe then consult your physician. I mean GP.
But they've all got it too.

So stop feeling sorry for yourself.
It's only a Cold.
Nobody wants to hear about it.

And crucially, just before you're completely recovered
and you will be, give or take three weeks,
and even though wraith-like in appearance,

one of your nearest and dearest will get it
and not only will they cast a baleful eye in your direction,
despite all your hand washing,
but they will need nursing.
And the sick bay, so recently vacated

will be occupied again.


  1. Love the dolls house version of your story!

  2. Everybody's sneezing into his elbow (remember Mexican 'flu) and looking bleary. The coughs are impressive and in the supermarket everyone's basket is full of tomato soup and mandarins.
    February at its shining best. I hope you recover very quickly.

    1. Yes I too had a tin of Heinz tomato soup in the basket.

  3. How well you have described the pathways taken by devious ills that sneak up on folks like us who don't often get sick. Isn't it an insult, is my first reaction, and then I just want to evict the symptoms as quickly as possible.

    The photos you've included in this post are really great, and evidence that the virus, cold, whatever has not diminished your creative talents!

    The first news story I saw on my early Sunday morning local tv news was that a tourist visiting from Australia had perhaps spread measles around various NYC sites said tourist had visited, including the Met Museum, and...a reasonably priced small hotel just two blocks from my apartment.

    I just keep washing my hands. xo

    1. Indignation is always my first reaction too.
      Not to mention measles on the plane both ways. The buggiest possible environment.

  4. Hope you're feeling better soon.

  5. This is my post of the year so far. Roll on my next illness and I'll be stealing it, beautiful photos and all, to pass off as my own. I hope you have a good book to aid recovery and to bonk the other annoying invalid on the head so as to counteract their incessant (I surmise) demands for chicken broth.

    1. Copyright waived for that honour. But give it a wipe down with disinfectant first.
      I am stockpiling chicken broth for Snowmageddon. It should be in Kilner jars next to the homemade kimchi but I don't know how to dispose of my Tupperware in an environmentally acceptable way.

  6. It was certainly nice of you to entertain us so well with your prose and photos whilst feeling so awful. Knock wood, I don't have a cold at the moment, but my DH does and when he coughs it sounds like his lungs are turning inside out. Not pleasant for anyone and very hard on him especially as we are traveling at the moment. On the other hand, we got a row to ourselves on a long flight as no one wanted to sit next to him. Small mercies. Hope you are on the mend soon.

    1. I know that cough and it feels as awful as it sounds. I hope DH will soon be better and that you don't go down with it because you felt you had to sit next to him on the plane.

  7. You said it (and illustrated it) so well! Don't the Winter illnesses feel like so much more of an insult when Winter is nearly over and you thought you'd got away without one...
    But that lampshade... fabulous!
    I was also struck by your wonderful shoulder halo Lucille, and then the cheeky and mischievous imp that lives in my brain (and who really shouldn't be allowed to comment on posts) suddenly saw it as two backlit streams of uncontrollable mucus... thus ruining the angelic image of it for me and anyone else who might be reading this... I can only apologise... :-)

  8. I am so sorry to hear of your malaise and I wish you well soon. I must say, however, that it seems to have increased your artistry, so I thank you for your words and your beautiful images.

  9. I like the anemones in the Marmite jar and hope you recover completely very quickly.