Tuesday, 6th March, 2012; 17:41
Location: Saigon VietnamWhy: IV and oxygen tanks makes it all so hard core.
I don't know if it's bad luck or my Grandma's spirit's idea of a sick joke but as I suck on a sour candy that she had requested I bring to her, I think it's just bad luck. After all, no one else got food poisoning that night we all sat down for dinner at my cousin, A Phat's in-laws' house this past Friday.
Delicious Vietnamese food was a plenty on the dinner table and we merrily chowed down on all the goodness home cookin' (along with some street stall items) had to offer. As usual, I steered clear of all the meats and dug into all the veggies, dipping them in spicy, unknown fish sauces of sorts. Love fish sauce. So very Asian.
So what appeared to a be typically wonderful and satisfying meal ended with a trip to the toilet a little while later. No biggie and I'll spare you the details. But it was a prelude of several trips later on that evening. And into the wee hours of the morning. This was Pai all over again. Haven't read the post? Go to 'A Slice of Pai' - it's amusing, I promise.
Okay, so when it's coming out from both ends, you know it's not just the runs. My stubbornness turned down several offers by A Phat's wife, Linh, to go to the hospital. Finally, it was well into Saturday morning and I succumbed. By that time, I was more dehydrated than I thought as later events proved.
Soldier down at a Vietnamese hospital:
Bless my relatives, I couldn't be more grateful to have them as family. I was quickly whisked away to a semi private room where I groaned, tossed and turned like a baby while they attended to me as needed. The next few hours were kind of a blur so I am recounting as told by my people.
I managed a smile; before the passing out drama:
IV injected. Check. More trips to the toilet. Check. Put in a wheelchair and taken away for x-rays? Okay. Back to the private room. Check. More groaning. Definitely check.
At some point, I had to get another x-ray. Wtf? This didn't happen in Pai. So, back in the wheelchair again, pushed outside into the blazing hot sun, every bump made me want to shit in my Cambodian skirt. More on that later. I do recall this trip to the x-ray room was extremely painful and remembered I really needed to, you know, go. We get into the x-ray room and I was instructed to stand! Instead I was held up by three family members, then my eyes rolled to the back of my head.
White light. That's all I remembered for a long time. White light. Like staring into a very large blank sheet of paper.
Finally, when I came to, I slowly started seeing colour and the doorway. I had fallen unconscious, hit the floor and wasn't breathing. But not before my brother Day caught me. Panic spread through him like a wildfire as I became dead weight. Holy shit momma.
I got wheeled back to my room, head bobbing around like a drunken soldier. Getting out of the wheelchair, I looked back at it and saw it was soiled. Definitely not my finest moment and felt the most vulnerable I had ever felt in my life. I had went when I passed out and no one noticed; they were too busy with my dead weight. Then came the oxygen tank and that's when I knew this was hard core. I wasn't breathing enough and may pass out again. Hard core I tells ya.
So back on more IV and more crying as they poked, prodded and drew more blood for 'testing' of which I never got a prognosis. Nor did I get any for the 'x-rays' taken. Damn Vietnamese hospitals. And I was also pumped with so much IV that my face and hands swelled and frozed up to Botox proportions enough to make Joan Rivers jealous.
Damn Vietnamese hospitals. The nurses were carelessly cruel. Or maybe I'm just a suck. Or maybe Botox scares me more than I admit.
Sort of recovering. At least I have internet to keep me from going insane while waiting to be released. This was before the Botox freak out:
And so, I survive another hospital tryst and live to see another beautiful day. Grandma, was this your idea of a funny joke? Or did you want me to experience what it could be like on the other side? I can only imagine White. A hand print on my forearm like Day's would have been way cooler. I know you are watching over me. I love you still. If it was a joke, it was a 1, 640, 000VND joke. A-Mah you are funny!