Yes, yes, I know it’s pretty pathetic to complain about something as pedestrian as a stomach bug the day after we learned one of our best friends has died. But you know what? Rick would want me to post this. I’ll tell you why. Because he would be the first to laugh at me and poke fun at me, followed in rapid succession by Tina, Escher and then a stern warning of gloom and doom would follow from Don about malaria, or some such and how it’s all to do with Peak oil and that we’re all fucked! (Perhaps I’m being a little hard on Don, but hey, if I can’t pick on y’all then y’all sure as hell can’t pick on me!) Of course, Don’s right, we are, but that’s besides the point. Or maybe it is the point.
More after the break, but beware, the details are gory.
Stomach bug. Travelers gut. Hotel sickness. Whatever you want to call it, I’ve got it. It’s the walking bug. The kind where you can walk around and be reasonably normal in your travels, except you don’t want to be more than a five minute walk from a real toilet, not one of those holes in the ground type they have around here because that shit, pun intended, can get real messy and fast. Just trust me on this one, ok?
It started the day before yesterday. I know exactly where I got it and why. What on earth possessed me to eat spaghetti with meat sauce in Vietnam is beyond me. I guess I was tired of rice. But about half-way through the meal I knew what was coming. That night as I lay in bed my gut writhed in agony. And the next day I walked around half-febrile with aches and pains. At first I thought I might have dengue fever, as the symptoms were a spot-on match. But the rash never appeared and the next day the fever was gone. But my bowels haven’t been normal since. And it sucks–well, there is probably a better word, but I’ll spare you.
Like I said, I can’t be more than five minutes away from my hotel for obvious reasons. The good news is that I can eat. My stomach is ok now. The bad news is that I’m now like a bird. And if I could fly, well, the Vietnamese would need some serious umbrellas. Alas, here I sit, in my bed, diddling around on the wi-fi while Saigon parties the night away. I can hear the fireworks from the Moon Festival going on right now. I’d dearly love to see it, walk along the banks of the river and all that but I can’t. Wah-wah-wah, what a baby, right? Of course, it’ll work itself through me at some point. Soon, I hope.
So, that’s where I am, reduced to whining about out of control bowels. And I know Rick, where ever he is, be it heaven, nirvana, or where ever the good guys go, is up there, laughing at me. Actually, he’s probably laughing with me, smiling, playing his guitar and whipping up a sarcastic little ditty about poor little Sean-Paul’s bowels, spaghetti and Vietnam. If anyone could make a song out of that it would be Rick!