One of those days


So the wedding is over, Palak, her family and everyone I was lucky enough to have spent time with over the last week, have moved on with their travels, or gone home.  Ahmedabad suddenly felt huge, lonely and difficult to manage.

In any case, I woke up around 4am on the morning after the wedding with a very rumbly unhappy tummy.  By 6am it had manifested in to a pretty lively case of the squirts.  I have had continual low grade tummy upsets almost since arriving in India- not pleasant, but nothing like this.  For obvious reasons, there is no graphic to accompany this information.  You’re welcome!

After a few hours of what felt like a pretty good effort at expelling the entire contents of my body, I figured the worst must be over, and started to get ready to go exploring.  However, by the time I got to putting my boots on, I was so exhausted I gave up and went back to bed.

Good decision.  My squirty bot-bot found new resources and continued to pay dividends to the shareholders.  By 1pm, I decided I had had enough, and took some immodium.  I am not a fan of the idea, and have never used it before, as it stops your bowel working, but does not kill the germs.  But hey, desperate times…  The instructions say take two, then another one after the next ‘loose motion’.

About half an hour after I took the follow up pill, I started to feel really hot and a bit odd. I looked at my face in the mirror- it had gone bright red.  My ears were glowing like Chernobyl and there was tingling in my hands and legs.

I sat on the floor of my room, as nausea kicked in, feeling awful and a bit anxious. It’s moments like this you wish you were not travelling solo and far far from home, and promise yourself (again) to never, ever ever to do it again.  Gaaagh.  Ever.

I sat there alone, wallowing in my own misery (but luckily nothing else) and assessed my options.  They were simple: call reception and seek an emergency doctor, or do nothing.

I chose do nothing.  Even at home I probably would have avoided a hospital visit, and I didn’t fancy being poked and prodded by a stranger and given medicine that might make me feel worse, so I decided to wait and see.  Of course the internet in my room was playing up at that very moment, so I couldn’t even find out if this was a common side effect and whether it was something to be worried about.

Drinking water naturally seems like a good idea, but when you are feeling plagued by germs that probably came from water, even water you’ve purified is not attractive.  I didn’t want to touch anything, everything felt unclean and a potential germy germ ridden threat.

I cranked up the aircon and crawled into bed to wait it out.  Eventually the heat went out of my face, although my hands and legs continued to tingle all day, and the next.

On the upside, I congratulated myself heartily for the hotel upgrade.  In addition to being significantly cleaner, the massive 42″ TV actually worked, so when I started to feel better, I watched 5 movies and had soup for dinner.

My new ‘luxury’ room

There were definitely points during the day when I really wished I wasn’t in India- that I was at home where it was clean and safe and I could shower with my mouth open.  Traveling here is like nothing I have ever experienced anywhere- challenging at the best of times, and sometimes overwhelming.

However, I know and accept that everyday of travelling isn’t necessarily fun or enjoyable, and that perhaps ultimately it makes you feel so much gratitude for where you do live, or teaches you some life lesson, or changes your perspective on the world, or causes you to put new trousers on. So I gave myself a bit of a pep talk, and consoled myself with “tomorrow will be better.”

Quote at the Ghandi Ashram, (although it was probably never used in this context before)


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