Sick and Down for the Count

I don’t get sick very often. And when I do, I’m usually up and at ’em in a couple day. Well, Sunday night I had a tickle in my throat. Monday morning I had a stuffed nose. Monday afternoon I was in the throws of a major cold.

I heard my mother saying, “starve a fever, feed a cold,” so at 5pm I made myself a big dinner, happy for the distraction, and actually hungry.

I drank a pot of tea, a bottle of water, and ate most of my dinner.

By 7pm my “cold” had developed a fever, and by 9pm it was still rising. I popped two ibuprofen, drank another bottle of water, another pot of tea, and made sure I knew who I would call in an emergency (the Consulate, Jeremy, Oriana from Sichuan University).

I prepared myself for a very cold shower, if necessary, and lay down in bed. But I was unable to use my CPAP because my nose was stuffed, unable to sleep in any case because every position had some annoying way of keeping me awake. I knew the fever was still high because I was chilled, even wearing my sweat pants, t-shirt, sweatshirt, under my very heavy blanket. Around 4am the fever broke. I was suddenly way too hot with all the layers and the covers, so I got up at 5am, too hot and tired of lying down.

About 8:15am I called Oriana, the lady in charge of the Sichuan University language lessons, and told her I was sick and wouldn’t be in for my 10am language class. It was kind of comforting to call China, on my 707-areaa-code Voip phone (using 011 86 to call long distance to China) and have her answer. She thanked me for calling, told me to take care of myself,Ā  and said she would notify the teacher to cancel my lesson.

IĀ  answered a few e-mails, but really didn’t have much energy. I stayed up until 9:45am to call my wife. I went through the symptoms, the treatments, and my plan with her. I know it worried her, but I didn’t want her not to know I was sick.

Blah, blah, blah, and so on, and so on, pretty much dragging myself around, until Tuesday night. I made another meal, this time a sizzling rice noodle soup, which I figured didn’t really count as “feeding a fever.”


Sizzling Rice Noodle Soup

My rice cooker is non-stick, so I can get all the rice out of the pan. In the old days, when the rice was cooked over a fire in a cast-iron pot, some of the rice always stuck to the cast iron. Hard to scrape out, and not good as steamed rice, the Chinese invented sizzling rice. For me to have sizzling rice, I had to purposely leave some of the rice coating the non-stick pan, leaving the warming burner on for several hours to dry out the cooked grains of rice.


Leaving rice for the pot to dry out

After the rice is completely dry, it shrinks right off any cast iron pot. The rice is then broken into 1-inch pieces and deep fried. It puffs and browns the rice, giving a delicious flavor and that special crunch. It’s kind of like Rice Krispies marshmallow treats, without the marshmallow šŸ˜‰

I put in about seven of those sweet red peppers I bought, you know, the ones that aren’t hot? Oh my! The hottest meal I’ve made to date! If this doesn’t burn all the microbes in my body, nothing will!


Oh Yeah! Hot Peppers!

After dinner, I was feeling adventurous, so designed the first selfie coat rack. You’ve heard, perhaps, about selfie sticks? Well this is a selfie coat rack, aka Crelfie šŸ˜‰


The first and only Crelfie

I must be feeling better, because I wanted to “document” my awful night of sleep with a reenactment of me tossing and turning uncomfortably in bed. This picture also used the “palm activated shutter” on my cell phone, which lets me take a selfie three seconds after showing the palm of my hand to the camera, giving me time to pass out.


Reenactment of Bad Night of Sleep

Well, I’m afraid that’s it for Monday and Tuesday’s blog. Oh, there is one more thing. I need to get some more of these “Golden Throat Dule Lozenge”. I had some left over from last years trip, but I used them up within the first 24 hours.



PS: WordPress is just the right speed now. I can take a little snooze between each key stoke!


About jamescmarch

A child of the '50's in rural Pennsylvania, an adolescent of the '60's in southern California, and a political activist of the 1970's in northern California, I have been a husband, a college graduate, an expert witness, a banker, a father, a software entrepreneur, and a philanthropist. Today, I follow my heart by writing.
This entry was posted in Chengdu, China, Sep-Nov 2016. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Sick and Down for the Count

  1. Sorry to hear of your pain, James. I’m hoping that by now you are feeling much better. I am so impressed with the beauty of your meals. The artist in you shines through in everything your do…even when you feel like poo. All the best, Chance

  2. Ken Piotrowski says:

    I hope you feel better my friend I’ll send some healing energy your way !


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