Thursday, 22 May 2008

Nomadic Torture

(picture: my cat, Mkya Ntini, who has no problem staying still whatsoever)

After writing about what nomads do best (move about, that is) I have discovered in the past few days what nomads do worst. Fellow nomad, Rebecca Campbell wrote in the Telegraph today about revisiting her homeland in the Australian outback. She said going home was the toughest test for her nomadic adventure. Not so Rebecca, so long as the immovable object continues its impetus, you will be forever nomadic.

But move, I did not. Here is how it happened. After a bout of heavy surfing on the blogcatalogue discussion boards (in which I was becoming more and more facetious) my gut clenched into a tight ball which bought a tear to mine eye, and my grey haired doctor scribbling an illegible note to the surgical admissions team at the local hospital. In pain, but still moving, I was more or less content to be travelling in my friends convertible Renault (ambulance shmambulance). The trouble began when I was asked to take a seat in the hospital waiting area. As a hyper active, peripatetic nomad (GO on, look it up, I know you won’t), with the nickname “momentum girl”, the very idea of sitting still on a blue plastic chair for a couple of hours was crippling enough. Even my intriguing surroundings – footballers with legs bent out of shape, a woman carrying her finger in a bloody towel and severely overweight nursing staff (which begged many a question) did not entertain me sufficiently and I was soon feeling cornered and nervously checking out windows and doors for potential escape routes.

Before long my upper lip had lost all stiffness, and I was, dare I say it, asking for pain relief (in a very polite British fashion). It got worse. When I was eventually seen, the staff at the hospital trapped me in my bed by cunningly sticking a needle in my arm and attaching a tube and a bag full of saline drip to the other end. I couldn’t even slightly shuffle. Worse still, there was but a paper thin curtain separating my ear from my neighbours mouth. The Cambridge accent has never been my favourite (the REAL Cambridge accent, not the plumy one). She even irked the capable SHO, who I could hear suggesting to her that unprotected sex could cause infections that would bring on stomach pains like hers. I noted that he had made no such suggestion to me and wondered whether to be offended or not.

A few hours later, unlike the brave Ted Kennedy, I shuffled out of Addenbrokes tanked up on Codine and muttering to myself. And thankfully also unlike Ted, I had no diagnosis of malignancy, instead, I had…erm…just NO diagnoses. But the recommended treatment may prove fatal. “Just rest, do nothing, eat nothing for 24 hours, take it easy”. My cool friend in her Renault smiled slyly at my groan – she knows me well. And since then everyone I know has called to offer the same recommendation. It’s almost as if they KNOW I burn candles at both ends and in the middle. Were I able to ignore the advice I have no doubt that I would, but although the gut now lies flat and lifeless, so do the legs. And the head is spinning and my mouth has that poo taste bought on by nothing having passed my lips. Worse - I am doing something I NEVER do – watching daytime television. Endless shows about antiques, decorating and buying houses fill my brain, reminding me that tomorrow morning I have to shift mine into the back of a van and move it. Groan. I am just about able to raise my fingers to this keyboard despite this whirring laptop weighing heavy and hot and sweaty on my legs…..


Wolf said... faith in even knowing from the start what peripatetic means, eh?

Oh well. Hoping that your day goes VASTLY better today.

Alex Mcone said...

I can guess how tough it is for you to be sitting still. But hey, it's just a phase - try to enjoy it!

Caroline Jaine said...

thanks guys....but ENJOY it? Are you sure?

Caroline Jaine said...

An error has been pointed out to me. Owner of said Renault has pointed out that it is in fact a Peugeot. Apologies to both car and owner. Cx

Da Old Man said...

Renault or Peugeot, at least it got you to your destination. Rest up, tomorrow is another day. I'd like to recommend some daytime TV for you, but it's all dreck.

RainforestRobin said...

You are just too much!! :) I could not get over the fact that even your hour of crisis and pain you are still SO funny and witty! I also loved this post because it made me realize I'm not the only one who goes through things like this. NOT that I wish this on you or anyone. Wonderful writing by the way.

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