Sunday, February 15, 2004

One of the pluses of living here - or in Africa, for that matter - are all these industrial-strength drugs you can buy over the counter. Extra-strength and maximum-strength. Alka-Seltzer, for example. Can't get that in many places in the world. And all those wonderful over-the-top-strong allergy medicines. I have this mild case of hay fever, you see. Which actually brings into question these pastoral fantasies I have of laying down on a hill covered in blooming sunflowers, or walking through "fields where the yellow grass grows knee high". But I digress.

Nyquil and Dayquil. The Ying and Yang of cough medicine. Such a beautiful concept. If you have a cold, you only have to ask yourself: Am I going to sleep or waking up? If the former applies, then you doze up on Nyquil. If the latter, then shoot up on Dayquil. Nyquil sounds a bit like 'night' something, and it's filled with sedatives. Enough to put down a horse, in my experience. Dayquil, on the other hand, is your cough-medicine-on-speed alternative. You really feel like you've had a few coffee pots to many, after taking the stuff.

So I have been suffering from this incessant coughing. And a constant flow of citrus-colored snot. This has been going on more or less since Christmas. This morning I woke up with a particularily bad case of this. After not sleeping all that well last night. So I wandered downstairs, looking for a fresh pack of tissues. I was greeted by my wife, who told me I needed to sleep - a cough-free sleep - and promptly stuffed a green-colored pill in my mouth. Before I knew what had happened, I had swallowed it, my wife had handed me some earplugs and one of those dark things that go over your eyes when you are trying to sleep in aeroplanes, and told me to go back to bed.

This was at 7 am. I woke up again just before 11 am. And felt great! It was like someone had said "No, hold on a minute. That is no way to start a day. Let's take two."

"Aaaaaaand, action!"